U.S. trade, services industry data underscore slowing economy

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The U.S. trade deficit jumped in May and trade tensions between the United States and China helped drive activity in the services sector to a two-year low in June, further signs that economic growth slowed sharply in the second quarter.

The economy’s dimming outlook was also underscored by other data on Wednesday showing private employers adding far fewer-than-expected jobs to their payrolls last month.

New orders for manufactured goods dropped in May for a second straight month.

The reports followed recent weak housing and business investment data, as well as moderate consumer spending. Business and consumer confidence have dipped.

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