U.S. payrolls near 200,000 for three straight months

U.S. job growth has accelerated with payroll gains of nearly 200,000 in each of the last three months.

The monthly unemployment rate remains unchanged, however, as more people without jobs look for work.

According to Labor Department estimates, nonfarm payrolls grew 195,000 in June with hiring spread across a range of industry sectors.

Estimates for payroll gains the previous two months also were revised upward a total of 70,000 to 195,000 in May and 199,000 in April.

Counting the latest numbers, payrolls have increased an average of 182,000 a month over the past year.

The unemployment rate held steady at 7.6 percent in June after edging up a tenth of a point in May.

Despite the payroll gains, 4.3 million people are still counted among the long-term unemployed who’ve been out of work for 27 weeks or longer. Another 8.2 million people are counted among those working part-time because their hours were cut back or they’re unable to find full-time work.

For June, the leisure and hospitality sector added 75,000 jobs, 52,000 of those in food services and drinking places.

Employment in professional and business services increased 53,000, while retail trade payrolls rose 37,000.

Health care employment continued to trend upward with 20,000 net new jobs. The financial activities sector added 17,000 jobs.

The average workweek for employees on private, nonfarm payrolls held steady in June at 34.5 hours. The average manufacturing workweek edged up a tenth of an hour to 40.9 hours.

Average hourly earnings for employees on private, nonfarm payrolls increased 10 cents to $24.01. Over the past year, hourly wages have climbed 51 cents, or 2.2 percent.