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February jobs growth rebounds

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February jobs growth rebounds

242,000 jobs created beats estimates, but wages fall.

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today that total nonfarm payroll employment rose 242,000 in February, and the unemployment remained flat at 4.9%. This follows revised jobs growth of 172,000 in January.

Consensus estimates had expected an increase of 190,000 new jobs.

Job gains were primarily part-time, however.

Job gains were primarily part-time, however, with only 12% of new jobs created being permanent according to the household survey. Overall, job gains came from health care, retail and bars and restaurants. Construction added 19,000 but mining-related industries lost 19,000 jobs.

The historically low employment participation rate inched up 0.2 percentage point to 62.9%, still near its lowest level since the 1970s.

On a less positive note, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls fell 3 cents, and average hours worked per week declined 0.2 hours at 34.4 hours.

The full report can be found here.


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