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September 03, 2004

Jobs Report: Fair to Cowbell

Economy Adds 144,000 Jobs in August; Unemployment Rate Falls to 5.4 Percent

Josh Marshall "Questions the Timing" of the Long-Scheduled Report, Calling it "Just a Little Too Convenient, Don't You Think?"

Pretty good. July's pitiable 32,000 jobs revised upwards to 73,000 -- not good, yet, but better.

America's payrolls picked up in August, with the economy adding 144,000 jobs, slightly less than economists were forecasting and highlighting the slow and uneven recovery in the labor market that jobseekers have braved.

The unemployment rate dipped to 5.4 percent last month from 5.5 percent in July. But the drop in the jobless rate in August came as people left the work force for any number of reasons, the Labor Department reported Friday. Economists were predicting the jobless rate to hold steady in August.

The gain in payrolls was short of the 150,000 net jobs that economists were calling for. However, it represented the biggest jobs gain since May and marked the 12th month in a row that payrolls grew.

"As far as employment growth goes, it was okay. Nothing good, but nothing terrible," said economist Joel Naroff, president of Naroff Economic Advisors. "For jobseekers, it's an environment that provides them with some opportunities but finding jobs is still not going to be that easy yet."

Job gains for July were revised up to 73,000, still a lackluster number but an improvement from the 32,000 advance first estimated. Payrolls for June also were revised up to show a larger gain than first reported.

Also added 22,000 manufacturing jobs, which is pretty good.


I got the fevah.


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posted by Ace at 11:08 AM

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