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Financial News: U.S. Job Growth Shows Substantial Reacceleration In March

U.S. Job Growth Shows Substantial Reacceleration In March

04/05/2019 - 09:17:00 (RTTNews)

(RTTNews) - After nearly grinding to a halt in the previous month, job growth showed a substantial reacceleration in the month of March, according to a report released by the Labor Department on Friday.

The report said non-farm payroll employment jumped by 196,000 jobs in March after edging up by a revised 33,000 jobs in February.

Economists had expected employment to increase by about 180,000 jobs compared to the uptick of 20,000 jobs originally reported for the previous month.

The Labor Department highlighted notable job gains in the healthcare and professional and technical services sectors.

Despite the stronger than expected job growth, the unemployment rate held at 3.8 percent in March, unchanged from February and in line with economist estimates.

The unemployment rate was unchanged as the labor force shrank by 224,000 people compared to a 201,000-person contraction in the household survey measure of employment.

The report said average hourly employee earnings rose by $0.04 to $27.70 in March, although the annual rate of growth slowed to 3.2 percent from 3.4 percent.

While job growth reaccelerated, Paul Ashworth, Chief U.S. Economist at Capital Economics, noted the pace of growth is still on a downward trend, with the three-month average monthly gain dropping to a 15-month low of 180,000.

"Overall, nothing here to shift the dial very far in either direction," Ashworth said of the closely watched monthly jobs report. "But the gradual slowdown in trend employment growth is another sign that the economy is weakening."

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