U.S. employers across a wide swath of the economy were confident enough in July to hire workers, with nearly every industry sector adding jobs at a solid rate.
Leading the rise, with 40,000 added jobs, was the category of professional services, which includes accountants, lawyers, engineers and consultants. Also in that category is temporary work, which posted a drop of 8,900 jobs — a potentially positive sign that people may be moving into more permanent positions.
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Retail, restaurants and health care posted sizeable job gains during the month. Manufacturing, which had lost ground the previous month, rebounded with 15,000 added jobs — the best performance for the sector since January.
Mining, though, kept shedding workers as lower energy prices continued to weigh on oil drilling-related businesses. The sector lost nearly 5,000 jobs in July.
Overall, U.S. employers added 215,000 jobs in July. The unemployment rate stayed at 5.3 percent, the lowest level since April 2008.