Has waiting for the results of the March jobs report, released by the BLS this morning, kept you on the edge of your seat as much as this season of “The Americans“? Good news: Your wait is over — and the results, much like the show, may give you ALL THE FEELS.
As you may know, following each month’s BLS jobs report, we read dozens of news reports, scour the Web, and break what we find down to three key talking points you can use.
Here are three things to know from today’s report:
1. Job growth in March surpassed many economists’ expectations.
U.S. employers added 215,000 jobs in March, surpassing most economists’ expectations (economists surveyed by Bloomberg anticipated 203,000 new jobs). The U.S. economy has seen steady job gains for the last 73 months.
Economists also anticipated the unemployment rate to remain steady, but it has risen to 5 percent, up from 4.9 percent in both January and February. Hold onto your kerchiefs: Unemployment is up because of the increase in the labor force — and that’s a good thing. The increase in labor market participation accounted for most of the rate increase.
According to Forbes: “…the [unemployment] rate increased for what most economists consider the ‘right reasons.’ The labor force grew from 158,890,000 in February to 159,286,000 in March.”
As The New York Times observes, the time people are spending looking for jobs may also be decreasing, as many seem to be going right into new work: “At the same time, the labor force itself grew more than the number of job seekers, suggesting that many of those re-entrants were going directly to work rather than spending a long time looking for a job.”