US Hiring Slows, Adding Only 20000 Jobs in February

US Hiring Slows, Adding Only 20000 Jobs in February”

All this is a way of saying that the job gains of the past several months have largely defied prediction. From 2009 to 2018, the state's economy added a total of more than 1.16 million private sector jobs.

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics said: "This decline reflects, in part, the return of federal workers who were furloughed in January due to the partial government shutdown".

State labor officials plan to release February numbers next week.

And there were no hires in February to work America's in leisure and hospitality - a stunning halt after January's gain of 89,000 jobs.

The unemployment rate fell slightly to 3.8 percent, the Labor Department reported Friday.

The pace of hiring in the United States fell last month to its lowest point in almost a year and a half, a surprise drop likely reflecting harsh weather and other temporary factors that led most economists to see the slowdown as a temporary blip.

While unemployment declined from 4 percent to 3.8 percent and employment in wholesale trade, professional and business services, and health care trended upward in February, construction jobs declined by 31,000, a possibly worrisome sign.

Federal Reserve policymakers have indicated this year they won't raise interest rates again until seeing inflation advance.

January's job growth was revised up to 311,000 from 304,000 and December was revised up to 227,000 from 220,000.

Economists say employers have kept hiring at a strong pace despite low unemployment as more people returned to the labor force, including students, women and people who had dropped out to collect disability benefits. Average hourly earnings continued their slow, steady climb, rising 0.4 percent month-over-month and 3.4 percent year-over-year, compared to 0.1 percent and 3.2 percent, respectively, in January.

"The U.S. labor market is still in good shape", said Gus Faucher, chief economist at PNC Financial.

The manufacturing sector created 4,000 jobs, the fewest since July 2017, after hiring 21,000 workers in January. The employment-population ratio, at 60.7%, was unchanged over the month but was up by 0.3 percentage point over the year. With these revisions, temporary help employment growth was lower than previously reported by 6,900 jobs. The economy added 260,000 jobs the following month. Over the year, Education and Health Services gained 9,800 (+1.2%) jobs.

While optimism among US manufacturers remains high, for example, almost 72 percent of respondents listed hiring as a tob concern.

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