Economy Gains 313,000 Jobs in February, Unemployment Unchanged at 4.1%

Posted by | March 09, 2018 | Uncategorized | No Comments

By Kenneth Quinnell Economy Gains 313,000 Jobs in February, Unemployment Unchanged at 4.1%

The U.S. economy gained 313,000 jobs in February, and unemployment was unchanged at 4.1%, according to figures released this morning by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

This continues the recovery of the labor market at a tempered rate, which means the Federal Reserve’s Federal Open Market Committee should continue to let the economy grow and not raise interest rates.

In response to the February jobs numbers, AFL-CIO Chief Economist William Spriggs tweeted:

Payroll employment jumps by 313,000 in February, but unemployment rate flat at 4.1% . Labor force participation near flat from last year. But, white and Black labor force participation are now virtually equal at 63.0% for whites and 62.9% for Blacks. @AFLCIO @APRI_National

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) March 9, 2018

Before Fed hawks start sharpening their talons for their interest rate hikes, nominal wages only rose by 2.6% over last year. This makes January’s wage hike an anomalous blip, not a trend. @AFLCIO #JobsReport

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) March 9, 2018

The broadest measure of unemployment (including involuntary part-time and discouraged workers) stops it fall toward reaching its low in 2000. Another reason the Fed can slow up on rate hikes. @AFLCIO #JobsReport

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) March 9, 2018

Reasons for Fed caution: part time for Economic reason jumped 293,000 in February because of slack work at the job; over the year Temp Service employment up 120,500 over the year–workers still searching for stability. @AFLCIO #jobsreport

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) March 9, 2018

Because Black and white Labor force participation rates are now equal, it means the unemployment rates are now fully comparable. Black unemployment is 6.9% compared to 3.7% for whites. So, this gap characterizes inequality in the job market.

— William E. Spriggs (@WSpriggs) March 9, 2018

Last month’s biggest job gains were in construction (61,000), retail trade employment (50,000), professional and business services (50,000), manufacturing (31,000), financial activities (28,000), health care (19,000) and mining (9,000). Employment in other major industries, including wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, leisure and hospitality, and government, showed little change over the month.

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for blacks decreased (6.9%). The jobless rates for teenagers (14.4%), Hispanics (4.9%), adult women (3.8%), adult men (3.7%), whites (3.7%) and Asians (2.9%) showed little change.

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed in February and accounted for 20.7% of the unemployed.

Kenneth Quinnell
Fri, 03/09/2018 – 11:43

Source: AFL-CIO

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