Mortgage lenders and brokers added 10,500 full-time employees to their payrolls in June, according to a U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report released Aug. 5.The surge in hiring came as single-family originations spiked in the second quarter and the rate on the 30-year fixed-rate mortgage dipped below 5.5% in late June. The hiring activity also may reflect an improving commercial real estate sector. The July employment report shows that jobs in the mortgage banking/broker sector rose from 505,200 in May to 510,700 in June. (There is a one-month lag in BLS reporting of mortgage-sector employment data. The July data will be released Sept. 2.) Friday's employment report shows that the U.S. economy generated 207,000 jobs in July and the unemployment rate remained unchanged at 5.0%. The stronger-than-expected jobs report also included an upward revision of new hires in May from 146,000 to 166,000.

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