U.S. employers created just 69,000 jobs in May, well below analysts' expectations, and the unemployment rate ticked up to 8.2 percent from 8.1 percent in the previous month, the Labor Department said Friday.
The health, transportation and retail sectors showed job gains, but construction lost jobs.
The rate of job creation in May was the lowest in the past 11 months, with the majority of analysts expecting more than 150,000 jobs to be created last month.
The total number of unemployed remained at 12.7 million.
The long-term unemployed, defined as those who have been looking for work for more than 27 weeks, rose from 5.1 million in April to 5.4 million in May, accounting for 42.58 percent of all unemployed workers.
The unemployment rate remained high for minorities, coming in at 11 percent for Hispanics and 13.6 percent for blacks.
The unemployment rate for men was at 7.8 percent, while the unemployment rate for women was 7.4 percent. EFE