Better Than Expected Job Growth In June
More jobs were created last month than economists had expected, but the unemployment rate held steady.
The agency also revised up its estimate of job growth in May — to 195,000 positions, compared with the 175,000 it initially estimated.
But the jobless rate last month was unchanged at 7.6 percent.
We'll have much more from the report and reactions to it as the morning continues. Hit your refresh button to be sure you're seeing our latest updates.
Update at 10:35 a.m. ET. "Are We Well Yet?"
In a related story, NPR's Marilyn Geewax looks at the recent relatively slow growth in jobs.
Update at 9:45 a.m. ET. Economy "Continues To Recover," Says White House:
"While more work remains to be done, today's employment report provides further confirmation that the U.S. economy is continuing to recover from the worst downturn since the Great Depression," writes Alan Krueger, President Obama's top economic adviser.
Update at 9:30 a.m. ET. Boehner Calls Growth "Tepid":
"There's some good news in this report, but economic growth is still tepid, the unemployment rate is far too high, and the president continues to promote policies that undermine robust job creation," House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, says in a statement emailed to reporters by his office.
Update at 9:05 a.m. ET. How Will The Federal Reserve React?
Reuters writes that "job growth increased more than expected in June, which could draw the Federal Reserve closer to implementing a plan to start scaling back its massive monetary stimulus later this year."
Update at 8:55 a.m. ET. Sharp Upward Revision In April's Jobs Data:
A month ago, BLS revised down its estimate of the job growth in April. It had initially reported that 165,000 jobs were added to payrolls that month. Then, in its first revision of the data, it said the increase was 149,000. On Friday, it revised the figure again — to a gain of 199,000 jobs.
"Of course, more revisions are possible. On average, the Labor Department changes its payroll numbers by about 46,000 — up or down — from the time the first estimate comes out until the third estimate is issued two months later, as more complete data comes in."
Update at 8:45 a.m. ET. Why The Unemployment Rate Didn't Decline:
Many months, the news about the number of jobs added to payrolls and the direction of the unemployment rate seem to contradict each other. Why, for instance, would the jobless rate have held steady in June if there were 195,000 more jobs?
One part of the explanation is that the numbers are based on different surveys. Employers are quizzed about how many jobs they have — that produces the payroll employment data. Households are questioned about who's working and who's not — that produces the jobless rate. Two surveys can mean two different views of what's happening.
June's report also offers a relatively simple explanation: There were 177,000 more people counted as being part of the civilian labor force. In an economy with nearly 156 million workers, that's pretty close to the 195,000 additional jobs that showed up in the survey of employers. So, the lack of change in the jobless rate makes sense.