The US economy continued robust job creation in July, adding 255,000 jobs, largely surpassing analyst expectations, according to data released today by the Labour Department.
The unemployment rate remained unchanged from the month before at 4.9 per cent. Analysts had forecast that non-farm payrolls would be far more modest, rising by only 185,000 jobs.
The new numbers were also accompanied by upward revisions for the months of May and June in a sign that the job markets were healthier than previously thought.
Private businesses and government agencies added 292,000 jobs in June, not the 287,000 first reported, and 24,000 jobs in May, not the low revised figure of 11,000.
The closely watched figures help fill out a complex economic picture for market observers eager for signs of whether the US Federal Reserve will raise interest rates later this year.
They were also unlikely to add turbulence to the US presidential campaigns, denying Republican candidate Donald Trump fodder for criticizing Democrats’ stewardship of the economy with the general elections three months away.