Hiring in the United States slowed sharply in July as the country struggled to control the coronavirus pandemic.
Employers added 1.8 million jobs last month, down from June’s record 4.8 million.
The unemployment rate fell to 10.2%, continuing to improve from the peak of 14.7% seen in April.
The numbers reignited calls for Washington to approve further economic stimulus, although the slowdown was not as severe as many economists had feared.
The US economy has lost around 10 million jobs since February, when unemployment hovered around 3.5% – a 50-year low.
In the three months leading up to the end of June, the country’s economy was hit by its biggest quarterly contraction in more than 70 years of record keeping, shrinking at an annual rate of 33% or nearly 10% from one year to the next.