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The U.S. economy added 223,000 jobs in June

The Bureau of Labor Statistics' latest report shows that the U.S. economy added 223,000 jobs in June, dropping the unemployment rate to 5.3 percent.

Unfortunately, job gains in April were revised down, from 221,000 to 187,000. May was revised down as well, from 280,000 to 254,000. That brings the average gain over the past three months to 221,000. But the 2008 collapse blew a very big hole in the economy; to close it by the summer of 2017 the economy needs to be averaging 246,000 jobs added a month.

Labor force participation also fell slightly, by 0.3 percent. That probably accounts for much of the drop in the unemployment rate, since it compares the number of people with a job to the number of people in the labor force (i.e. actively looking for work).

Average hourly earnings rose just 2 percent, dropping back from a 2.3 percent gain last month. So the trend in wage growth is still effectively flat.