Economy generates 163K jobs in July; unemployment rate up
WASHINGTON – The U.S. economy generated jobs last month at the fastest pace since February, a sign it is resilient enough to pull out of a midyear slump and grow modestly even as the rest of the world slows down.
The 163,000 jobs employers added in July ended three months of weak hiring. But the surprising gains weren’t enough to drive down the unemployment rate, which ticked up to 8.3 percent last month from 8.2 percent in June – the 42nd straight month the jobless rate has exceeded 8 percent. The United States remains stuck with the weakest economic recovery since World War II.
The latest job numbers, released Friday by the Labor Department, provided fodder both for President Barack Obama, who highlighted improved hiring in the private sector, and Republican challenger Mitt Romney, who pointed toward higher unemployment.
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