US economy adds 559,000 jobs in May

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Washington

The US economy added 559,000 jobs in May and the unemployment rate dropped to 5.8 percent, the Labor Department said Friday, as Covid-19 vaccines helped businesses reopen and rehire

. While last month’s employment gains were weaker than the consensus estimate, the monthly report contained evidence the economy was recovering from the mass layoffs caused by the pandemic, with the number of long-term unemployed declining 431,000 to a still-high 3.8 million.

However, the economy is still short 7.6 million jobs compared to February 2020, before the pandemic struck, the report said.

Sectors that were badly damaged by business restrictions to stop the virus made up the bulk of the employment gains last month, with the leisure and hospitality sector adding 292,000 jobs, two-thirds of which were in businesses like bars and restaurants. —AFP