The U.S. economy added 280,000 jobs last month, while the unemployment rate inched up from 5.4 percent to 5.5 percent in May, according to the Labor Department.
More people searching for work was behind the increase in the May unemployment rate.
The jobs added in March and April were also revised by the Labor Department, increasing by a total of 32,000.
There was an 8-cent increase in average hourly earnings last month, bringing the figure to $24.96. Wages have increased 2.3 percent from one year ago.
Elise Gould, senior economist at the Economic Policy Institute, issued the following statement about the new employment figures:
This morning's jobs report shows a solid increase in payroll employment, with 280,000 jobs added in May--slightly higher than the previous six month average of 260,000. This provides further evidence that the slowdown in March was a minor blip in an otherwise slowly recovering labor market. Year-over-year average hourly earnings rose 2.3 percent, still below a reasonable target (3.5 to 4 percent). While this is an encouraging report, the evidence continues to point to the fact that the Federal Reserve should not even start a conversation about raising interest rates until 2016. Even though job growth was solid, it needs to be sustained over a longer period of time in order to significantly tighten the labor market to the point where we finally see significant wage growth.