Unemployment now down to 6.1%

The U.S. economy added 288,000 jobs in June, pushing the national unemployment rate down to 6.1%, a pre-recession low not seen since September 2008.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, that translated to a decrease of 325,000 unemployed persons, which now number 9.5 million nationally. The number of long-term unemployed (jobless for 27 weeks or more) dropped by 293,000 to 3.1 million.

Among the industries that benefitted most from June's job spike were professional and business services (up 67,000 jobs), retail trade (40,000), and food services drinking places (33,000).

Within the retail trade, building material and garden supply stores got a boost of 8,000 jobs in June.

Manufacturing added 16,000 jobs, all of which were in the durable goods sector.

June's job growth was sharply higher than the rate seen during the first five months of 2014, and it was well above economists' expectations. The average job estimate, according to economists surveyed by Bloomberg, was 215,000.

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