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June 02, 2006
Payroll Growth Slows Even Further

Employers added 75,000 jobs to their payrolls in May, and the unemployment rate dipped to 4.6 percent, the Bureau of Labor Statistics of the U.S. Department of Labor reported.

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Payroll employment growth had averaged 164,000 per month from January to April. The unemployment rate was 4.7 percent in April.

In May, job gains continued in education and health services, wholesale trade, professional and business services, and mining. Retail trade employment fell by 27,000 jobs in May.

Meanwhile, average hourly earnings of production or nonsupervisory workers edged up by 1 cent in May to $16.62, seasonally adjusted. This followed an increase of 10 cents in April. Average weekly earnings decreased by 0.2 percent in May to $561.76. Over the year, average hourly earnings increased by 3.7 percent and average weekly earnings increased by 4.0 percent.

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