Unemployment Rate Falls to 9.5% in June, But Job Creation Still Slow

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People wait in line to enter the City University of New York (CUNY) Big Apple job fair in New York, April 23, 2010.

REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

The U.S. economy lost 125,000 jobs in June, leading some to fear that the economic recovery is stalling.

June’s unemployment rate was 9.5 percent, down from the 9.7 percent reported in May. Most reported job losses came after 225,000 temporary census employees ended their work. Excluding the census employees, the economy created 100,000 jobs. Some experts predicted that the country would add about 110,000 jobs, but the U.S. has to add at least 130,000 jobs each month just to catch up with new people entering the job market.

(Is it the end of the job recovery? Check out TIME’s Curious Capitalist post on this morning’s news.)

The private sector only added a net total of 83,000 jobs, a number the New York Times calls “dishearteningly low.” The professional and business service, leisure and hospitality and education and health care fields all added jobs, while construction, finance and state and local government cut positions.

Despite the census’s effect on these job numbers, these rates paint a bleak picture for any economic relief. The unemployment rate only dropped because 625,000 people gave up their job searches and left the work force.

Need some more depressing statistics? America’s labor pool includes about 14 million Americans who are looking for work. And if you’re counting, the U.S. economy has lost 7.4 million jobs since the recession started in December 2007.

(See TIME’s covers on jobs.)