New York (CNN Business)Employers added another 1.4 million jobs to the US economy in August, as the jobs recovery continued to slow.
This was in line with expectations, and down from 1.7 million jobs added in July and 4.8 million in June.Every person who can go back to work is a win for the recovery from the unprecedented jobless crisis the Covid-19 pandemic has brought on. However, America is still down 11.5 million jobs from February.This means millions of families are still in need of benefits to make ends meet while Congress continues to argue about the next stimulus package. The unemployment rate fell to 8.4%. It’s below 10% — which was also its Great Recession peak — for the first time since March.Read MoreIt was a much bigger decrease than economists had expected, and appears to have resulted from workers on short-term or temporary layoffs finding jobs again. But this improvement was offset by some factors. Permanent job losses increased by more than half a million to 3.4 million. More than 8 million Americans have been unemployed for 15 weeks or more.Meanwhile, the unemployment rate didn’t improve evenly across different groups. The White unemployment rate is only 7.3%, while it remains above 10% for Black, Hispanic and Asian workers. The Black unemployment rate is the highest at 13%. During the Republican National Convention last week, President Donald Trump promised to create 10 million new jobs in 10 months. Even if his prediction comes true, the US economy wouldn’t have gained back all the jobs lost since February.Trump’s promise could prove difficult to achieve. The recovery is losing steam as the sugar rush from stimulus wears off, millions of people are still working from home, and retail, restaurants and other services industries remain battered from the pandemic.Economic activity plunged in March and April when stay-at-home orders went into effect, and then started improving as the federal government deployed aid including stimulus checks, expanded unemployment benefits and loans through the Paycheck Protection Program. But since then, the recovery has slowed. CNN Business’ Back-to-Normal Index, which tracks the recovery , shows it has moved mostly sideways since June. (Click here to see the recovery in your state.)This is a developing story. It will be updated.