Unemployment Rate, Jobs Report May Show Added Jobs, But Struggling Nation

PHOTO: Jhada Thomas, 15, right, Alexis Lucero, 15, left, fill out job applications for Red Mango Inc. during The Summer Youth Jobs & Training Expo 2012 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado, U.S., on May 18, 2012.
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The Labor Department's June jobs report--the most closely-watched economic number leading up to the presidential election--will be released on Friday and economists don't expect much summer sunshine in the nation's unemployment picture.

Economists expect that employers added around 90,000 jobs in June, higher than the 69,000 jobs added in May, but lower than what is needed for a full economic recovery from the last recession that began with the mortgage meltdown in 2008.

Private payroll tracker, ADP, reported on Thursday that the U.S. aded 176,000 private jobs in June, more than expected, following a revised 136,000 jobs added in May.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics will report on Friday both seasonally adjusted and non-seasonally adjusted unemployment figures, accounting for temporary summer jobs.

"There's a lot of uncertainty in June number because of the end of the school year," Scott Brown, chief economist with Raymond James, said. "Seasonal adjustment is pretty significant."

Prior to seasonal adjustment, the economy could see 450,000 jobs added, with the addition of students getting work and jobs related to the summer travel season.

"Those may be a bit lower than expected, so I think the risks are tilted toward the downside this go around," Brown said.

In addition to accounting for the number of added summer jobs, the bureau also must tote up the number of jobs lost for the summer.

Brown said before seasonal adjustment, the economy could see 850,000 drop in public and private education jobs due to the end of the school year.

With a current unemployment rate of 8.2 percent and 12.7 million unemployed persons in the country, Brown said 125,000 to 130,000 added jobs are needed just to absorb the growth from the working-age population. Economists expect the unemployment rate to hold steady at 8.2 percent for June.

"At this point we're still running in place, growing just enough to absorb growth in the population but not enough to recover those job market losses during the downturn," Brown said.

Brown expects around 100,000 nonfarm payroll jobs and 115,000 private payroll jobs, seasonally adjusted, were added in June.

"We're seeing some drag from state and local governments which have been contracting," he said.

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