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Job market adds 117,000 positions, but wages remain low

Posted on August 5th, 2011 Read time: 1 minutes

The jobs market saw big gains in July, compared to the previous two months, potentially signalling growing optimism among human resources administration and more incoming work for payroll outsourcing firms.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, 117,000 nonfarm jobs were added in July, which caused a slight decrease in the overall unemployment rate, from 9.2 percent in June to 9.1 percent last month.

Private employment increased by 154,000 during July, spurred by gains in industries such as healthcare, retail trade, manufacturing and mining. Specifically, healthcare employment rose by 31,000 jobs, followed by 26,000 in retail trade and 24,000 and 9,000 in manufacturing and mining, respectively.

However, U.S. News and World Report claimed it's not just unemployment that's plaguing the nation's economy, but low wages as well.

"Workers in the labor market right now are getting hit twice," Annette Bernhardt, policy co-director at the National Employment Law Project, told the source. "They're looking at largely low-wage jobs in terms of what's out there, and they're looking at jobs that have seen stagnant and even declining wages."

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