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POST TIME: 8 September, 2018 00:00 00 AM
US employment jumps 0.2m in August
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US employment jumps 0.2m in August

Pay for American workers saw its biggest bump in nearly a decade last month amid a surprise late-summer hiring spree that offered no sign jobs markets could be cooling, the government reported yesterday.

The unexpected job gains, which saw jobs sprout up in construction, transportation, wholesale trade, finance and health care, was a shot in the arm for President Donald Trump, who was beset this week by reports his staff had actively sought to undermine him.

The US economy added 201,000 new jobs, well above analyst expectations, while the unemployment rate held steady at an already-low 3.9 percent and wages gained ground on inflation.

Ahead of crucial elections in November, the White House—which had been at pains this week to counter reports of flagging wage growth—will surely welcome news that average worker pay grew by 2.9 percent compared to August of last year, the biggest increase since June 2009, and in line with consumer inflation.

But the strong gain in pay will also solidify expectations for the Federal Reserve to continue raising interest rates this

year to keep a lid on inflation, something that has drawn

Trump’s ire.

The August employment gain appeared even larger given a downward revision to July’s comparatively weak numbers.

The strong hiring report also brought average gains to 196,000 per month over the past year.

Professional and business services added 53,000, bringing job gains for the sector to 519,000 since August of last year.