Total non-farm payrolls rose in June, the second straight month of gains, according to data released Thursday by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Employment rose by 4.8 million in June, with the unemployment rate declining to 11.1 percent, down from the mid-pandemic high of 14.7 percent in April. 

“These improvements in the labor market reflected the continued resumption of economic activity that had been curtailed in March and April due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and efforts to contain it,” the Department or Labor said in a release.

“In June, employment in leisure and hospitality rose sharply,” the Department of Labor added in the release. “Notable job gains also occurred in retail trade, education and health services, other services, manufacturing, and professional and business services.”

The real estate sector — not including rental and leasing — added more than 18,000 jobs in June, according to the report.

The jobs report is mostly positive, but is set against a backdrop of a growing spread of COVID-19 and more states reversing the progress of opening up sects of the economy, specifically in the hospitality sector. New cases were increasing in 41 states as of Thursday morning, according to data compiled by NPR. 

“Stay-at-home orders and business closures have disproportionally impacted the services sector, hence the strong rebound in leisure and hospitality, as states began to re-open,” Odeta Kushi, the deputy first economist at First American, said in a post on Twitter. “Yet, 40 percent of the country is reversing its plans to reopen, potentially resulting in another labor market shock.”

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