For the second consecutive month, the economy created virtually no jobs, net of temporary Census jobs. The Labor Department reported that the economy lost 131,000 jobs in July, 12,000 less than the 143,000 drop in the number of temporary Census workers. The June numbers were revised down by 100,000 to show a gain of only 4,000 non-Census jobs.
The job loss corresponds to a decline in labor force participation. While the unemployment rate has edged down by 0.2 percentage points to 9.5 percent since May, this is attributable to people who gave up looking for work and left the labor force. The employment to population ratio fell by 0.1 percentage points to 58.4 percent, only slightly above the 58.2 percent low in December. The drop is entirely due to a falloff in employment among women. Their EPOP fell by 0.2 percentage points in July, while the EPOP for men edged up by 0.1 percentage points. The EPOP for men now stands 0.6 percentage points above the low hit last December, while it is only 0.1 percentage points higher for women.
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