U.S. employers added only 54,000 new workers in May, the fewest amount in eight months while the unemployment rate rose to 9.1, according to the U.S. Labor Department.

The report released today showed clear evidence that the U.S. economy is slowing due to the high price of gas and natural disasters in Japan which dealth a blow to U.S. manufacterers.

In the past three months, the pace of hiring slowed as the economy saw  only 220,000 new jobs created.

Private sector employers only hired 83,000 new employees in May-- the lowest in nearly a year.

Municipal governments eager to cut costs fired 28,000 workers, the most since November. A trend that has meant job cuts for 22 straigh months.

Last month, however more people entered the workforce pushing unemployment up from 9.0 percent in April.