Speed Reads

Numbers don't lie

Unemployment rate plummets to 6.1 percent

The latest unemployment numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics are out, and they're pretty rosy.

The U.S. added 288,000 jobs in June, crushing economists' expectations for an addition of 215,000 jobs. The unemployment rate also fell to 6.1 percent, the lowest reading since September 2008. Expectations were for the unemployment rate to remain unchanged at 6.3 percent. The labor force participation rate remained unchanged at 62.8 percent.

The rosiest figure of all is the number of long-term unemployed, those out of work for 27 weeks or more, which declined by 293,000 in June to just 3.1 million.

The latest data suggests that even though GDP plummeted in the first quarter — prompting calls for stronger stimulus — the economic recovery remains mostly on track, and the GDP slump in the first quarter had more to do with the unseasonably cold weather and firms drawing down inventories than economic weakness.