Money Matters - Simplified

132,000 payroll jobs added to economy

Washington -- The U.S. economy added 132,000 payroll jobs in June, down from 175,000 in May, the Labor Department announced Friday.

Despite surging energy and food prices, wages increased a moderate 6 cents an hour, or 0.3 percent, the report said.

Labor predicted core inflation should be kept in check by moderate wage and labor productivity growth.

But, a wage-price spiral could result from rising gasoline prices later this summer and pressure from the ethanol program on grain and food prices, the agency predicted.

The household survey of employment, which includes the self employed, shows the unemployment rate at 4.5 percent in June, the same as in May.

The report said the contradictory economy would continue with a job market great for highly skilled professionals and poor for ordinary working Americans who continue to bear the greatest burdens of globalization.

Copyright 2007 by United Press International.