|Best Stretch of Hiring Since 1997!... Click For Large Version|
The Labor Department released last month’s employment figures and the report shows U.S. employers picked up the pace of hiring last month with an increase in wages, supporting the views that the labor market and the broader economy are moving closer to full health.
Here are the highlights from the report...
- January was the 52nd straight month of employment gains in the U.S., and the 12th straight month of job additions above 200,000.
- Hourly wages advanced 2.2%, posting the largest gain since August and edging past the 2% average since the expansion began in mid-2009.
- The Fed is less worried these days. Economic activity “has been expanding at a solid pace” and job market conditions have “improved further,” leading the Fed to expect continued moderate growth and a possible rate rise sometime this year
- The U.S. labor market added 257,000 jobs in January, surpassing economists’ estimates of 228,000 jobs, according to Bloomberg data.
- The unemployment rate ticked up to 5.7% from 5.6% in December. Its rise is a good sign, suggesting more Americans are searching for jobs, swelling the labor force. It’s a sign of growing confidence among job seekers.
- Employers added almost 3 million workers last year, the most since 1999!
- Some of the biggest job gains last month went to the retail and construction sectors, which added 46,000 and 39,000 jobs, respectively
To make this good news even better the job gains for November and December were revised up!!!
November non-farm payrolls increased to 423,000 from 353,000, and December gains increased to 329,000 from 252,000 jobs. November’s reading of 423,000 job additions represents the strongest month of private-sector job gains since 1997.
Here's one final chart from The Bureau of Labor Statistics to drive the point home that our economy may have finally turned the corner...