The U.S. Department of Labor jobs report today surpassed expectations and demonstrated the continued resilience of the U.S. economy, with 253,000 jobs added in April, even amid concerns in the bank industry, Federal Reserve interest rate hikes and other signs of economic slowdown, reports CNBC.
- The unemployment rate fell to 3.4%, equaling the pre-pandemic low from 2019 and the lowest level since 1969.
Inside the report: Despite February and March job growth numbers being revised downward by 149,000, the overall job gains remain robust. Wage growth jumped to 4.4% year-over-year, and average hourly earnings saw a notable 0.5% month-on-month increase.
- The gap between Black and White unemployment rates also reached a record low, with only a 1.6 percentage point difference. Black unemployment fell to an all-time low of 4.7%.
- The significant downward revision, however, does point to overall slower hiring, noted New York Times economic/business reporter Ben Casselman on Twitter, but “a much more gradual slowdown than most people were expecting.”
Manufacturing jobs: While professional and business services led gains with an increase of 43,000, manufacturing saw positive job gains of 11,000 last month.
- “In April, the largest increases in manufacturing employment occurred in transportation equipment (up 6,700, including 5,800 for motor vehicles and parts), fabricated metal products (up 6,300), computer and electronic products (up 3,200) and chemicals (up 2,000),” said NAM Chief Economist Chad Moutray.
- “In contrast,” Moutray added, “the biggest employment declines in the sector for the month occurred in paper and paper products (down 2,700), electrical equipment, appliances and components (down 2,600), nonmetallic mineral products (down 2,300), wood products (down 1,400) and textile product mills (down 1,000).”
Status check: “There were 12,991,000 manufacturing employees in April, the most since November 2008,” Moutray said, “with the sector continuing to build on strong gains seen in the previous two years.”