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U.S. Added 209,000 Jobs in July, Unemployment Holds at 4.3%

by Ben Popken /
Image: People wait in line to enter the Nassau County Mega Job Fair at Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York
People wait in line to enter the Nassau County Mega Job Fair in Uniondale, New York, on Oct. 7. U.S. job openings rose to their highest level in more than 13 years in August even as hiring fell, the U.S. Department of Labor said.SHANNON STAPLETON / Reuters

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Job creation increased in July with 209,000 new positions created, while the unemployment rate held steady at 4.3 percent, according to Labor Department data released Friday.

Economists surveyed by Reuters expected nonfarm payrolls to grow by 183,000 jobs last month after they soared to 222,000 in June.

Average hourly earnings edged upward to 4.3 percent while private sector payrolls added 205,000 jobs and the labor force participation rate ticked slightly upward to 62.9 percent.

The largest job gains were seen in the food and drink services, professional and business services, and healthcare sectors. There were also increases in manufacturing and construction employment.

Related: A Graphic Guide to the Monthly Jobs Report

With no significant job losses, the U-6 or so-called "real unemployment" rate was left unchanged at 8.6 percent.

"These are laudable numbers to say the least," Mike Loewengart, VP, Investment Strategy at E*TRADE, told NBC News in an email. "With continued low unemployment and steady growth many were look looking to see that “show me the money” improvement on the wages side. And improvement is what we got." He said that amid solid corporate earnings and strong markets that the latest report increases the pressure on the Federal Reserve to reduce its bond portfolio, which would push up interest rates.

Early this morning before the report President Donald Trump took to Twitter to tout various economic bright spots.

And after the jobs report Trump praised the numbers as "excellent" in a tweet. "I have only just begun," he said. "Many job stifling regulations continue to fall. Movement back to USA!"

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