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Friday, July 6, 2012

Dismal U.S. hiring shows economy stuck in low gear | Reuters

(Reuters) - Employers hired at a dismal pace in June, raising pressure on the Federal Reserve to do more to boost the economy and dealing another setback to President Barack Obama's reelection bid.

The Labor Department said on Friday non-farm payrolls expanded by just 80,000 jobs in June, falling short of forecasts and barely changed from May's revised reading of 77,000. Job creation during the month wasn't enough to bring down the country's lofty 8.2 percent unemployment rate, and the report fueled concerns that Europe's debt crisis was shifting the U.S. economy into low gear.

"We're just crawling forward here," said Nigel Gault, an economist at IHS Global Insight in Lexington, Massachusetts. While Obama holds a narrow lead in most national polls, voters are often critical of his handling of the economy.

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