According to the latest numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the American economy created 280,000 jobs in May. That's a solid showing, especially after the drop in March, which ended a long run of over 200,000 per month. However, if job creation continues at around 250,000 a month, it'll still be August of 2017 before we're back to the economic health we had before the 2008 collapse.
Happily, the March collapse was actually revised up, from 85,000 jobs to 119,000, while the April numbers were revised down, just slightly, from 223,000 to 221,000.
Unemployment ticked up slightly in May, from 5.4 percent last month to 5.5 percent. The number of Americans participating in the labor force remained effectively unchanged, while those who are involuntarily employed part-time or who have given up on the labor force is still way above its pre-2008 trend.
Average hourly earnings rose 8 cents from last month to $24.96, which is a 2.3 percent increase over a year ago. So the wage growth trend is still more or less flat, indicating the country has a ways to go yet. Jeff Spross