Economists agree: Employment report shows 'strength'

05.10.2013


Economists agree: Employment report shows 'strength'
Economists agree: employment report shows "strength"

The U.S. economy made up for what appeared to be abysmal employment numbers in March by surging back in April to create 165,000 jobs, a comeback that economists say suggests the U.S. still has the resilience to bounce back even in the face of tax increases and federal budget cuts. 

According to the latest employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, not only did hiring pick up in April, but even February's already sky-high numbers were revised upward, and March's employment figures were also made much more palatable. What's more, the unemployment rate dropped to it's lowest in four years - 7.5 percent. 

Economists responded simply but with certainty.

"This is a good report," John Silvia, chief economist at Wells Fargo, told The Associated Press. "There's a lot of strength... It's good for the economy. It's good for people's income."

The BLS noted that February's employment figures were revised upward by 138,000 jobs, resulting in an astounding 332,000 new positions that month. March, which originally saw 88,000 jobs created, added another 50,000 jobs for a total of 138,000. 

Silvia added that as the U.S. economy continues to add more jobs, it suggests the federal budget concerns do "not mean recession," or even a "dramatic slowdown."

According to The Los Angeles Times, the latest jobs report beat the expectations of many economists, who called for 148,000 new jobs to be created. Details show private companies added 176,000, with the professional and business services sector leading the way with 73,000 new positions. This includes jobs in the contract staffing sector. 

"With an increase of 165,000 jobs in April, and following the significant upward revisions for February and March, the job market looks better than expected despite the sequester or issues like the rising cost of providing healthcare benefits," said Kathy Bostjancic, director of macroeconomic analysis at the Conference Board.

The data also revealed that April was a great month for contract staffing employment. Over the course of the month, 30,800 contract positions were added - the largest monthly increase in more than a year. The total number of contract workers in America now sits at about 2.7 million, marking monthly growth of 1.2 percent and a yearly gain of 7.4 percent. The percentage of contract jobs compared to all positions is also rising. In March, this number sat at 1.95 percent, compared to the 1.97 percent last month. 

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