The U.S. legal industry added 4,800 jobs in June as the country’s overall economy continued an uninterrupted streak of monthly job growth, according to U.S. Labor Department data released Friday.
The agency’s Bureau of Labor Statistics issued its monthly look at the employment situation in the United States, showing a rebound in the legal services sector after more tepid results in May. BLS reported that 1,141,400 people were employed in legal services in June, a figure that includes lawyers, paralegals, legal secretaries and other law-related professions. The jobs data released Friday is seasonally adjusted and provisional, meaning it could be revised later.
Also on Friday, BLS revised upward the legal jobs numbers in May. Initially, the agency showed a decline in May of 200 jobs as compared with the prior month. But in Friday’s revised figures, BLS reports that the legal services industry actually gained 300 jobs in May, compared with April.
June’s figures mark another increase—this time of 4,800 jobs. At more than 1.141 million people employed in the industry in June, the legal jobs figures edged outside of a range that has prevailed since December 2016. From that time to now, the legal industry has experienced fluctuations but has generally employed between 1.13 million and 1.14 million people, according to historical BLS data.
The employment figures in June also constitute an uptick compared with June 2017, when the industry employed 1,139,500 people, according to BLS.
The legal services employment numbers come amid a generally positive jobs report for the U.S. economy as a whole, which gained 213,000 jobs in June and reportedly outperformed economists’ expectations. That result marks the 93rd consecutive month of job growth in the United States.
Overall, the country’s unemployment rate rose by 0.2 percent to 4 percent, but BLS also reported that the number of discouraged workers—people who are out of work but aren’t looking for jobs because they don’t think anything’s available for them—decreased by 155,000 compared with June 2017.
Hourly wages for private, non-farm jobs in the U.S. increased by five cents to $26.98 per hour, according to the preliminary BLS data issued Friday. That marks a 72 cent increase for average hourly earnings over the year so far.