WASHINGTON, DC: The US jobless total increased last month for the first time this year, providing further evidence that the economy is slowing.

Figures from the Labor Department revealed employers added 113,000 new jobs last month, fewer than expected. This pushed the jobless rate up to 4.8% from the 4.6% reported in June.

The jobs data makes it less likely that the US Federal Reserve will raise interest rates when it meets today (Tuesday).