The economy added 236,000 jobs in February and the unemployment rate slipped to 7.7. percent, its lowest level since December 2008, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. Economists had forecast payrolls would grow by 160,000, and that the unemployment rate would remain at 7.8 percent.
Job growth for December, originally reported at 196,000, was revised upward to 219,000, while January was revised down to 119,000 from the originally reported 157,000.
Average weekly hours rose along with average hourly earnings. One concern from the report was the number of multiple jobholders, which increased 340,000. This means new jobs went to an individual already employed, making the decline in the unemployment rate even more significant.
The nation’s unemployment rate fell to 7.8 percent in August – the lowest level since January 2009, but the economy added just 114,000 jobs, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Friday.
The report was good news for President Obama, taking away one of the principal attack lines from Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who had noted the unemployment rate was below 8.0 percent and had been for the President’s entire tenure.
The nation added just 96,000 jobs in August as the unemployment rate dipped to 8.1 percent as 581,000 people left the labor force, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. The unemployment rate fell to the lowest since April, but remained above the election-critical 8.0 percent. At the same time, July’s job gains – originally reported at 163,000 – were reduced to 141,000, while June’s job numbers dropped to 45,000 from 87,000.
The nation added 80,000 jobs in June, the Labor Department reported Friday. This makes job growth in the second quarter 225,000, the weakest quarterly gain in jobs since the third quarter of 2010 when the economy lost 136,000 jobs. The closely watched unemployment rate remained at 8.2 percent, unchanged from May.
Economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected payrolls to grow by 90,000 and for the unemployment rate to remain at 8.2 percent.
Average weekly hours ticked up to 34.5 from 34.4, and average hourly earnings rose.
Average weekly hours fell as well, dipping to 34.4, and average hourly earnings were up just two cents.
The nation's unemployment rate continues to trend down. It slipped to 8.5 percent during the month of December as the economy added 200,000 new jobs, the U.S. Department of Labor said Friday morning. December marks the sixth consecutive month of 100,000-plus job gains and the first such stretch employers have been able to string together since 2006. Over the 2011 calendar year, nonfarm payroll employment rose by 1.6 million.