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American economy adds modest 162,000 jobs in July

August 2, 2013 • Business


FILE – In this Monday, July 15, 2013 file photo, a woman waits to talk with employers at a job fair for laid-off IBM workers in South Burlington, Vt. The government issues the jobs report for July on Friday, Aug. 2, 2013. (AP Photo/Toby Talbot, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. economy is steadily adding jobs — just not at a consistently strong pace.

July’s modest gain of 162,000 jobs was the smallest since March. And most of the job growth came in lower-paying industries or part-time work.

The unemployment rate fell from 7.6 percent to a 4½-year low of 7.4 percent, still well above the 5 percent to 6 percent typical of a healthy economy. The rate fell because more Americans said they were working, though some people stopped looking for a job and were no longer counted as unemployed.

All told, Friday’s report from the Labor Department pointed to a less-than-robust job market. It suggested that the economy’s subpar growth and modest consumer spending are making many businesses cautious about hiring.

The report is bound to be a key factor in the Federal Reserve’s decision on whether to slow its bond purchases in September, as many Login to read more

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