In June, only 80,000 new jobs were created in the U.S. economy and the figure for May was revised to 77,000. Therefore, between April and June, average monthly job creation decreased to 75,000.
In fact, between last December and February, the private sector created a monthly average of 252,000 new jobs. By contrast, during the past three months only 225,000 new jobs were created. Also, in June, the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 8.2 percent.
These disappointing figures of job creation confirm the downward revisions, made by most analysts, of the economic growth projections for this year. For instance, in June, the Federal Reserve released a downward revision of its U.S. growth projections for 2012, to between 1.9 and 2.4 percent.
Last week, the International Monetary Fund followed, reducing to 2 percent its U.S. economic growth estimate for 2012.
Until the end of the year, nothing is expected to happen on the side of fiscal policy. The impasse between the House of Representatives and the White House has led to the end-of-the-year "fiscal cliff." So called, because then tax cuts expire and drastic, mandatory federal spending cuts set in unless Congress does something about them.
For this reason, all eyes are on the Federal Reserve. The next testimony before Congress by Chairman Ben Bernanke is on July 17-18, while the next meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee will be held in Washington on July 31 and Aug. 1.
Isaac Cohen is an international analyst and consultant, a commentator on economic and financial issues for CNN en Espaņol TV and radio, and a former director at the UNECLAC Washington office.
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