Economy added 1.8 million jobs in July

Job growth in the national economy slowed significantly July, according to preliminary data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The economy added a net 1.8 million jobs in July on a seasonally-adjusted basis, which followed combined gains of more than 7.5 million jobs in May and June.

Private sector employers added a net 1.5 million jobs in July, which was less than a third of the 4.7 million jobs added in June. 

The July slowdown suggests that the durability of the labor market recovery is now being tested, after the initial bounce in May and June. This is due in large part to spiking COVID-19 case levels in many parts of the country, which has led to pausing or backtracking on reopening plans. 

As of July, the economy was still nearly 13 million jobs – or 8.4 percent – down from its February peak. Full recovery from the devastating impact of the coronavirus likely won’t be seen in the labor market until late-2021 at the earliest.  

Track more economic indicators and read more analysis and commentary from the Association's chief economist Bruce Grindy.