The July jobs report from the U.S. Labor Department showed a robust level of job growth to the point the country reached the jobs level seen before the pandemic. That milestone was previously reported, but now, more major sources are agreeing.
In July, U.S. companies added a full 528,000 jobs, according to the newly available federal data, which news outlets characterized as essentially unexpected considering issues like inflation and the interest rate hikes meant by the Federal Reserve to try addressing that issue. The New York Times called July’s level of job growth an “unexpectedly strong gain.” The unemployment rate in July hit the historic low — 3.5 percent — experienced by the United States just before the devastating impacts of COVID-19 set in nationally. The unemployment rate of 3.5 percent, which was recorded both in July and before COVID-19 forced economic slowdowns as authorities implemented protective measures, was what The New York Times called a 50-year low. A statement from President Joe Biden identified the unemployment level as the lowest in more than 50 years.
“Today, the unemployment rate matches the lowest it’s been in more than 50 years: 3.5%,” the president said on Friday. “More people are working than at any point in American history. That’s millions of families with the dignity and peace of mind that a paycheck provides. And, it’s the result of my economic plan to build the economy from the bottom up and middle out. I ran for president to rebuild the middle class – there’s more work to do, but today’s jobs report shows we are making significant progress for working families.” The U.S. unemployment rate reported for July was one-tenths of a percentage point lower than the rate seen in June. Other economic issues are continuing: when adjusted for inflation, U.S. GDP shrunk this year for two quarters in a row, and inflation itself hasn’t vanished, although gas prices are falling. However, the current portrait of the U.S. economy is quite simply much more nuanced than GOP proclamations of doom suggest. The country isn’t getting “destroyed,” no matter claims from Trump.
Job growth in July was, besides broadly surpassing apparent expectations, significantly higher than the level of job growth in June, when U.S. employers added 398,000 jobs. An Associated Press report identifies a specific expectation from economists for the July jobs report to land at 250,000, and it obviously surpassed that possible outcome. Throughout Biden and Congressional Dems’ time in power, they’ve pursued multiple policy plans that amount, in part, to jobs bills. Just recently, Congress passed a sweeping piece of legislation to support the U.S. tech industry. It would provide tens of billions in subsidies in support of the U.S. production of semiconductor chips — a critical and widely used technological component — and some $100 billion in federal support for research and the development of new businesses in key, tech-related areas. Biden characterized the bill as set to bring down costs for items throughout the economy. Issues in obtaining necessary supplies of semiconductor chips were among contributors to the onset of recent high prices.