US job openings massively overshot expectations last month

Emma Haslett
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The pound fell against the dollar on the news (Source: Getty)

The number of new jobs created in the US smashed analyst expectations in June, figures published today showed.

The closely watched non-farm payroll figure rose to 222,000, up from 152,000 in May and way ahead of analyst expectations of 179,000.

Having fallen after a slew of weak UK economic data this morning, which included a wider trade deficit and muted growth in industrial production, the pound fell even further against the dollar, dropping to $1.276 or 0.7 per cent lower.

Labour force participation rose to 62.8 per cent, although unemployment rose to 4.4 per cent from 4.3 per cent in May.

Meanwhile, average hourly earnings grew 2.5 per cent year-on-year, flat on the previous month, but narrowly missing analyst expectations of a 2.6 per cent increase.

On a monthly basis, that figure rose 2.5 per cent, also flat on the previous month but below forecasts of 2.6 per cent.

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The pound slid 0.7 per cent against the dollar (Source: Bloomberg)

“President Trump has bigger fish to fry today with his first face-to-face meeting with Vladimir Putin, but he will take great encouragement from June’s non-farm payrolls report," said Dennis de Jong, managing director at

“There had been a loss of momentum in the US jobs market over the past few months, with poor wage growth having a knock-on effect on inflation.

“The Federal Reserve will also be buoyed by these latest figures and Janet Yellen may feel that she can continue with her rapid interest rate hike strategy.

“However, average earnings are still lagging behind, which won’t help boost inflation, and we’ve seen this week that some FOMC members are uneasy about further hikes. It’s touch and go whether we see rates rise again before the year is out.”

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