Total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 236,000 in March, and the unemployment rate changed little at 3.5 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment continued to trend up in leisure and hospitality, government, professional and business services, and health care.
Key Data Points:
- Labor force participation is trending higher up to 62.6%.
- Government employment increased by 47,000 in March, which is the same as the average monthly gain over the prior 6 months.
- Health care added 34,000 jobs, however, that is lower than the average monthly trend of 54,000.
- Private non-farm payrolls rose by 9 cents or .3% to $33.18. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings increased by 4.2%.
January was revised lower and February was revised higher for a combined -17,000 less than previously reported. Revisions are a very important data figure given the fact the Fed remains data dependent.
This is the first time in a while we can say a report had little significance on direction. This report neither portends trouble or economic prosperity. A ho-hum report such as this is likely what is needed on this Good Friday.
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