Employment increased more than forecast in June, wages picked up and the U.S. jobless rate held close to a four-year low as the economy weathered the effects of higher taxes and federal budget cuts, Bloomberg reported.
Payrolls rose by 195,000 workers for a second straight month, the U.S. Labor Department said. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey projected a 165,000 gain after a previously reported 175,000 increase in May. The jobless rate stayed at 7.6 percent, while hourly earnings in the year ended in June advanced by the most since July 2011.
Job gains and a rebound in housing are shoring up Americans' finances and boosting expectations that the economy will gain momentum even after the payroll tax increased and government agencies began to cut spending, Bloomberg said. Federal Reserve policymakers have said they'll start to trim bond purchases before the end of the year as unemployment falls.
"The job market's as good as it was last month," Drew Matus, deputy U.S. chief economist at UBS Securities LLC, said. "The labor market is going to continue to be a source of support for the U.S. economy, both in terms of income and in terms of consumers' willingness to spend." Read more.