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August sees slowest job growth in eight months

by Reg Clodfelter

After adding 200,000 jobs every month in 2014, the U.S. economy only added 142,000 nonfarm jobs in August, the lowest number in eight months and well below the 12-month average of 212,000, leaving the unemployment rate virtually unchanged at 6.1 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The retail employment sector lost 8,000 jobs in the month, with food and beverage stores losing 17,000 jobs. The contraction in retail exacerbated the struggles elsewhere in the economy, as the industry is generally a core driver of job growth, according to JLL.

The big winners in the month were professional and business services, which added 47,000 jobs; healthcare, which added 34,000 jobs and has grown by 104,000 jobs in 2014; and construction, which added 20,000 jobs again in August, keeping in line with its average monthly gain over t

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