The United States added a meager 80,000 jobs in June, the third month of weak job creation amid a sluggish economy, official data showed Friday.
The unemployment rate was unchanged from May at 8.2 percent, the Labor Department said.
The private sector accounted for all of the jobs growth, creating 84,000 positions, while the public sector shed 4,000, continuing a downsizing trend as governments tightened budgets.
Most analysts had forecast the economy created a stronger 100,000 jobs, and the jobless rate would remain at 8.2 percent for a second consecutive month.
The data showed a sharp slowdown in hiring across most major industries in the second quarter as the economy struggled to gain traction against pressures from Europe's debt crisis.
The average number of jobs added in April, May and June fell to 75,000 jobs, only a third of the first quarter's pace.
Temporary services jobs surged to 25,200 in June, up from 18,600 in May.
The retail sector was the hardest hit, shedding 5,400 jobs, as consumer spending slowed.