The labor market may finally be softening, according to jobs numbers released today, The Washington Examiner reports.
What’s going on: The U.S. economy added 236,000 jobs in March, short of expectations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In manufacturing, employment edged down by 1,000.
- Overall unemployment has reached a historically low 3.5%.
Why it’s important: “A weaker jobs report indicates that the Fed’s rate hikes are beginning to work and could cause the central bank to lean toward a more dovish monetary stance.”
- March’s numbers follow several months of strong job gains.
- Jobs have so far proved resilient to inflation, but this latest report “raises fears that a recession is right around the corner.”
Manufacturing wages: Average hourly earnings of production and nonsupervisory employees in manufacturing rose to $25.91 in March from $25.78 in February, with 4.7% growth in the past year.
Benefits and openings: Adding to indications of a softer labor market is last week’s number of new applications for unemployment benefits.
- At 228,000, the figure was much higher than recently reported numbers.
- February recorded about 9.9 million job openings across all sectors, the first time in almost two years the number dipped below 10 million.
- In manufacturing, February saw 694,000 manufacturing job openings, down from a revised 732,000 in January, according to Job Openings and Labor Turnover data released Tuesday.