In what can only be described as a disappointing report, the Labor Department this morning said the economy created a mere 142,000 jobs in August, a number far off the 220,000 to 230,000 economists forecast. Unemployment inched down to 6.1% from 6.2%.
It was the smallest increase yet this year, and follows six months of gains over 200,000 jobs each. Going into August, the monthly average gain in new jobs was 230,000.
Temp grew by 13,000 jobs, bringing the year’s total to 124,500 new temp jobs. On average, staffing firms are adding 15,600 new jobs a month this year. That puts the industry ahead of where it was last year at this point, when the average monthly increase was 14,000 jobs.