President Barack Obama's administration called on Congress to do more to help the economy create jobs, with Labor Secretary Hilda Solis saying May's rise in the unemployment rate was unacceptable.
"Congress has to take some action because while we see the unemployment rate where it is, it's not acceptable," Solis told the CNBC network on Friday.
Earlier, the Labor Department said the U.S. unemployment rate rose a tenth of a point in May to 8.2 percent. The department also said U.S. employers added just 69,000 people to payrolls during the month, the weakest increase in a year.
Obama's top White House economist also on Friday said that the numbers show the economy is growing but not fast enough and that it still faces "serious headwinds" from the euro-zone crisis and gas price spikes.
"Problems in the job market were long in the making and will not be solved overnight," Alan Krueger said.
"There is much more work that remains to be done to repair the damage caused by the financial crisis and deep recession." he said, urging that Congress act on Obama's stalled job creation proposals. Stubbornly high unemployment poses a threat to Obama's 2012 re-election bid.
© 2016 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.