Higher Unemployment amid Slow Job Gains
Today’s employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicated an increase of 163,000 jobs in July (chart 1). That’s the most jobs added in four months, but still not enough to reduce unemployment. Coming in at 8.3% (chart 2), unemployment continued its four month upward trend.
The rise in the unemployment rate was telegraphed around 17 months ago when jobless claims lost their downward momentum and began rising (chart 3). If claims numbers continue at elevated levels, expect more trouble in the jobs market.