US job growth jumps in July, easing recession fears
HISTORY: The U.S. economy added a much larger than expected 528,000 jobs last month, the biggest gain since February, bringing the level of employment back to where it was before the job market was upended by a global health crisis. July’s massive gain was more than double the 250,000 that economists polled by Reuters had forecast. And the unemployment rate fell to 3.5%, matching the half-century low last seen in February 2020. The July jobs report was the strongest evidence yet that the he economy was not in recession, which could put pressure on the Federal Reserve to continue its aggressive interest rate hikes. The stock market opened lower on Friday morning as investors believed the US central bank would continue. The Labor Department’s jobs report released on Friday also showed employers continuing to raise wages at a brisk pace and maintaining longer hours for workers. Large job gains last month were led by the leisure and hospitality industry, with most jobs added in restaurants and bars. Yet employment in leisure and hospitality remains down more than a million jobs from its February 2020 level.