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The Job Market Is the Strongest It’s Been Since Before the Recession


Jul. 3, 2014 Five Thirty Eight

Yes, the jobs recovery is real.

For much of the five years since the recession ended, the job market has been stuck somewhere between disappointing and terrible. Employment was rising, but wages were stagnant. Unemployment was falling, but mostly because people were giving up looking for work. Hiring would accelerate for a month or two, but would quickly lose that momentum.

But in recent months, something has changed. On Thursday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that U.S. employers added 288,000 jobs in June and the unemployment rate fell to 6.1 percent, its lowest level since September 2008, the month Lehman Brothers’ bankruptcy sparked a global financial crisis. The U.S. has added 1.4 million jobs so far this year, making it the best half-year since the recession ended. Payrolls are up by 2.5 million over the past year, also the best mark of the recovery.

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