Outperforming expectations for a second straight month, the U.S. economy added 4.8 million jobs in the month of June, well over expert predictions of just under 3 million. The nearly 5 million new jobs marks the highest job creation numbers for a single month in U.S. history.
The unemployment rate also dropped further than anticipated, falling to 11.1% rather than the forecast 12.4%.
Both numbers are the best posted by the U.S. economy amid the coronavirus pandemic, which has been going on since March. The month of May had seen an increase of 2.7 million - a staggering number itself, but dwarfed by the June report.
Investors were pleased by the news, causing Wall Street to open with a 400-point surge.
Despite the good news, the recent economic rollbacks and closures due to the virus's resurgence in various areas of the country are not reflected in the announcement. That impact will not be felt until next month's report.
"The 4.8 million rise in non-farm payrolls in June provides further confirmation that the initial economic rebound has been far faster than we and most others anticipated," said Michael Pearce, senior U.S. economist at Capital Economics. "But that still leaves employment 9.6% below its February level and with the spread of the virus accelerating again, we expect the recovery from here will be a lot bumpier and job gains far slower on average."
The end of furloughs, coupled with a significant rise in leisure and hospitality sectors, paced the record-setting month of June.