Nightly News   |  September 06, 2013

Signs of a struggling economic recovery

The unemployment rate may have ticked down to 7.3 percent but analysts say that the kind of jobs that are being created are part-time with relatively low wages and no benefits. NBC’s John Yang reports.

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>>> there is news this evening about american jobs and the long slog of recovery for so many americans. there were 169,000 new jobs produced in august, pretty modest number as they go. the unemployment rate ticked down to 7.3% but largely because, they say, fewer people are even looking for jobs. and an old plot line is back again. a lot of the jobs they're finding are part time with low wages and few benefits. that story tonight from nbc's john yang .

>> i'd like to talk to you about the legal issues you have rnchs attorney scott neal bills lots of hours not all of them at a law firm . he's also a ymca building supervisor. and takes the odd tree trimming job when he can. altogether he hopes to make $15,000 this year. and at 26 --

>> need one more plate.

>> reporter: -- he still lives with his parents. when you went to law school , is this what you envisioned?

>> no. no, not at all. the judge denied it.

>> reporter: neal says his job hunt after law school was bleak.

>> if you gotten interview somewhere, it was really good. usually that didn't pan out, but it was nice to get at least an interview.

>> reporter: neal 's struggle highlights how soft the recovery is. of the 848,000 jobs created this year, nearly two-thirds are part time .

>> that tells us there a little bit of tentativeness out there among employers for hiring people full time .

>> got plenty of tvs to watch.

>> reporter: neal sees growth opportunities at the y, full will-time work in management. how does that make you feel if you gave up the law?

>> it would make me feel kind of sad that i spent three years in law school that the economy wasn't good enough to make it as an attorney.

>> reporter: even though his parents helped pay for his law degree , they don't mind if he doesn't end up using it.

>> just as long as he's got a regular job are regular pay and regular benefits, it's what i hope for.

>> reporter: despite his struggles, neal is still confident about his future.

>> maybe it won't go the exact way i planned on it, but i know i will be successful one day and make something of myself.

>> reporter: no matter what it is he ends up doing. john yang , nbc news, michigan.