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The pace of growth in the Canadian manufacturing sector picked up to its best level in eight months in July as gauges of new orders and employment improved, data showed on Friday. The RBC Canadian Manufacturing Purchasing Managers' index (PMI), a measure of manufacturing business conditions, rose to a seasonally adjusted 54.3 last month from 53.5 in June. "Canada's manufacturers kicked off the second half of 2014 on stronger footing, clearly benefiting from improving global economic activity – it's encouraging to see the momentum," said Paul Ferley, assistant chief economist at RBC.
The US economy generated 209,000 new jobs in July, down from June but maintaining the solid 200,000-plus monthly streak since February, the Commerce Department said Friday. The unemployment rate rose a mere 0.1 point to 6.2 percent, still near its lowest level since October 2008 and well down from the 7.9 percent at the start of 2013. Nevertheless, the number of unemployed rose by nearly 200,000 to 9.67 million, in part because of the constant increase in the number of working-age Americans, as well a return to the labor force by 141,000 people who had dropped out and were not previously counted as unemployed. Average weekly earnings ticked up only slightly, suggesting, as the Federal Reserve said Wednesday, that there is still slack in the labor market despite the steady gains in job creation.