Payrolls increased 128,000 in August; Unemployment drops to 4.7%


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Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 128,000, and the unemployment rate dipped a bit to 4.7% in August from 4.8% in July, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported. Payroll employment grew notably over the month in education and health services; several other industries had modest increases. Average hourly earnings rose by 2 cents, or 0.1 percent, in August following larger gains in the prior 2 months.

The number of unemployed persons (7.1 million) and the unemployment rate (4.7 percent) were essentially unchanged in August. A year earlier, the number of un- employed persons was 7.4 million, and the jobless rate was 4.9 percent.

Both total employment (144.6 million) and the employment-population ratio (63.1 percent) were essentially unchanged in August. The labor force partici- pation rate held at 66.2 percent.

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