US economy adds $20 billion in new jobs in September
The US economy added $20.5 billion in jobs in the second quarter, bringing the number of jobs added since Trump took office to more than 6.7 million, according to new jobs reports released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The unemployment rate fell to 5.9 percent in the third quarter from 5.6 percent in Q2.
The economy added 5.2 million jobs in Q1, up from 5 million in Q4.
The US added 577,000 jobs in 2016, an increase of about 4 million jobs per year.
The growth rate was revised up slightly to 3.9 percentage points from 2.6 percentage points in the latest quarter.
The jobs report came after the White House released a report on Thursday showing the economy expanded at an annualized rate of 2.9% in September.
The White House report showed the economy grew at an average annualized pace of 2 percent in September, up slightly from a previous estimate of 2-3 percent.
While the latest jobs numbers are not necessarily a sign of robust job growth, they are likely to spur a push by Trump and Republicans in Congress to boost the federal unemployment rate, which currently sits at 6.8 percent.
In a statement, the White Houses chief economist Douglas Holtz-Eakin said the jobs report was “a major step forward in improving the national outlook and providing a measure of how our economy is doing under the new administration.”
The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported that the average hourly earnings of full-time workers rose by 3.4 percent in August, the best month of gains since October of 2016.
The median wage for hourly workers rose slightly, to $25.71 an hour.
Ahead of Friday’s release, President Trump announced he was “planning to announce some significant tax cuts that will increase jobs and growth in the United States.”
The White House said the Trump administration is working to increase the federal minimum wage to $10.10 an hour by 2020.
That would be a big step forward from the current $7.25.