USA added 313000 jobs in February, most in over a year

10 March, 2018, 01:14 | Author: Elaine Woods
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Retail along with professional and business services followed with 50,000 jobs each and manufacturing added 31,000 jobs.

The news left Republicans even more optimistic about economic progress under President Trump.

Economists have warned that industries that use steel and aluminum - from vehicle companies to craft breweries - could face significant job losses as a result of the tariffs.

On Twitter, the president expressed elation.

There is optimism that tightening labour market conditions will spur faster wage growth this year and pull inflation toward the Fed's two per cent target.

More modest wage growth cools fears about inflation and rising USA interest rates, both of which spooked the markets last month.

The U.S. nonfarm payroll employment increased by 313,000 jobs in February, the 89th straight month jobs have been added on to what is the longest streak of monthly job growth on record.

The national economy added 15,400 net new jobs in February edging the Canadian unemployment rate down to 5.8% from 5.9% in January.

On one side are those who worry about overheating: Given the 4.1 percent jobless rate (that number was unchanged in February), if the economy is allowed to boom, it will create inflation rather than improvement in real living standards. (Some of the post-tax-cut compensation announcements over the past few months were ultimately credited to this pressure.) In February, average hourly wages rose a modest 4 cents, after a 7-cent increase in January. It's been adding jobs at a steady clip, it's drawn people back from the sidelines, and unemployment has plunged. Economists were expecting to see job gains of around 200,000.

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Discouraged workers are persons not now looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them.

Employment in other major industries, including wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, leisure and hospitality, and government, showed little change over the month.

But there also were signs the hunger for increasingly scarce workers was causing companies to dig deeper into the labor pool. The remaining 1.2 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in February had not searched for work for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities.

Still economists said the report does not fuel fears of runaway inflation.

This chart isn't that novel, but it is important: unemployment is something to watch this report and every report this year, because it's probably headed below 4 percent. Chris Low of FTN Financial said in a client note.

But judging from recent comments, at least, it seems unlikely that the Fed will pay heed to those arguments.

The recovery from the Great Recession has been plagued by tepid wage growth of about 2 percent a year.

The Labor Department says wage gains, meanwhile, fell from the previous month to 2.6 percent year-over-year growth.

Anecdotal reports suggest worker pay is indeed beginning to rise.



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