As U.S. President Donald Trump issued tariff threats against China and Mexico, US hiring slowed down during the month of May. The amount of new jobs was below the 180,000 that had been forecasted by economics. It hasn't raised, or cut, the interest rate target range at any meeting so far this year.
Revisions subtracted 75,000 jobs from the prior two months, bringing the three-month average to 151,000.
The unemployment rate is at its lowest level since 1969. The unemployment rate held steady at 3.6%.
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Stocks have surged since Fed Chairman Powell said on Tuesday the central bank would "act as appropriate to sustain the expansion", suggesting a possible rate cut as a solution to weakening economic data and uncertainty over trade.
"These data make it easier for the Fed to ease either this month or next, if the trade tensions intensify and the stock market drops sharply", economist Ian Shepherdson of Pantheon Macroeconomics said in a research note. Average wages rose 3.2 percent in April compared with a year ago, a solid if not exceptional gain.
In economic data, US job creation slowed considerably in May, raising fresh worries about the health of the domestic economy in the second quarter.
Over the last 12 months, wage gains were 3.1 per cent and have been at or above three per cent for 10 straight months, outpacing increases in consumer inflation but confirming the lack of any upward trend.
Hiring slowed across all sectors in May, with the share of industries showing job gains during the month the smallest since July 2016.
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Meanwhile, Trump has also announced a 5 percent tariff on imports from Mexico, effective June 10, in an attempt to make the trade partner respond more vigorously to the growing stream of migrants who travel from Central America through Mexico and enter the USA illegally.
Automakers are cutting jobs and production as United States sales have slowed.
Manufacturing and construction saw particularly anemic job growth in May, one of the clearest signs that Trump's tariffs are having a negative impact on blue-collar sectors the president has been trying to boost.
The average hourly wage grew 3.1% in the past year, above the cost of living but well below the 4% growth experienced during the economic boom of the late 1990s. Prior to April's report, the consistent unemployment rate suggested that workers are jumping back into the workforce to fill open jobs, rather than the workers who are now collecting unemployment welfare, according to WSJ. Yet wages should be rising faster than they are as employers compete for workers.
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