The American jobs boom showed no sign of slowing last month, but it was a mixed bag in the retail sector.
Jobs in clothing and accessories stores rose by 6,900 between May and June to 1.38 million, but department stores shed 4,000 workers, leaving their total headcount at 1.17 million, figures from the Labor Department showed.
Overall, the U.S. added 213,000 jobs, beating Wall Street expectations for a 195,000 rise, while May’s number was upwardly revised to a 244,000 gain.
The unemployment rate, however, inched up from an 18-year low of 3.8 percent to 4 percent, but economists put that down to a surge in the labor force and believe it will come down. A year earlier it stood at 4.3 percent.
“The 213,000 gain in non-farm payrolls in June, which followed an even stronger 244,000 rise in May, provides further evidence that uncertainty over trade policy isn’t yet having a major impact on the economy,” Andrew Hunter, a U.S. economist at economic consultancy Capital Economics, said. “It also leaves the Fed firmly on track to raise interest rates twice more by year-end.”
The Federal Reserve has already raised rates seven times since 2015, and Americans will have to brace themselves for several more over the next couple of years, with the central bank expecting rates to hover around 3.4 percent in 2020.