There was some cautious optimism in advance of this morning’s new job numbers, but few expected the data to be this good.
The new report from Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the U.S. economy added 288,000 jobs in June, well ahead of forecasts. The overall unemployment rate, meanwhile, dripped to 6.1% – its lowest point since September 2008, nearly six years ago.
For the fifth consecutive month, public-sector layoffs did not drag down the overall employment figures. Though jobs reports over the last few years have shown monthly government job losses, in June, the private sector added 262,000 while the public sector added 26,000. The latter may not sound like much, but after several years in which that total was negative, it’s heartening.
As for the revisions, April’s totals were revised up from 282,000 to 304,000, while May’s figures were also revised up, from 217,000 to 224,000. Combined, that’s an addition 29,000 jobs.
Overall, the report suggests the jobs landscape is clearly improving, which is no doubt proof that American employers are in on the conspiracy to distract Americans from Benghazi.
All told, over the last 12 months, the U.S. economy has added over 2.49 million jobs overall and 2.43 million in the private sector. What’s more, June was the 52nd consecutive month in which we’ve seen private-sector job growth – the longest on record.
At this point, with the year about half over, 2014 is currently on track to be the best year for U.S. job creation since 1999.
Above you’ll find the chart I run every month, showing monthly job losses since the start of the Great Recession. The image makes a distinction – red columns point to monthly job totals under the Bush administration, while blue columns point to job totals under the Obama administration.
Update: Here’s another chart, this one showing monthly job losses/gains in just the private sector since the start of the Great Recession.