Apr 06, 2018

Putting U.S. Employment Numbers in Context – March 2018

Post by Freedom Partners

This morning, the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that the unemployment rate for March 2018 remained at a 17-year low of 4.1 percent and that the economy gained 103,000 jobs. The number of jobs added during February was revised up to 326,00 total jobs for an average of nearly 202,000 jobs created per month so far this year. Further, the number of people continuing to receive unemployment benefits dropped to the lowest level since December 1973.

While job growth was modest during March, this report provides an additional look at how the labor force has been thriving during the Trump administration’s first fourteen months. During that time, average hourly earnings for all private sector employees rose more than 3 percent, signaling a strong turnaround for workers after years of stagnant wage growth. Additionally, the economy gained more than 2.5 million jobs, at an average rate of 181,000 jobs per month, and the unemployment rate dropped 0.7 percentage points. The largest private sector job gains were seen in education and health services, as well as professional and business services.

More encouraging, after months of work by congressional leaders and members of the administration, President Donald Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law late last year. This historic legislation is already spurring job creation, making businesses more competitive, and improving the lives of millions of Americans. To date, close to 400 businesses have already announced plans to invest in the economy and give more money back to employees.

Below is a deeper look at the numbers from today’s report, what they say about the state of the U.S. labor market, and how the Trump administration is tracking after the first year.