Market Overview

Another Jobs Shocker: Unemployment Rate Plunges To Lowest Level Since September 2008

Another Jobs Shocker: Unemployment Rate Plunges To Lowest Level Since September 2008

The first post-polar vortex jobs report has been released and it was a shocker – in a good way.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that Nonfarm Payrolls, which is one of the most closely followed gauges regarding the state of the economy, increased by 288K in the month of April.

The increase in the number of new jobs was well above the consensus estimates for an increase of 212K, and above with March’s revised 203K (Feb: 197K, Jan: 129K Dec: 84K, Nov: 244K, Oct: 200K, Sept: 163K August: 193K, July: 89K).

As usual, there were revisions to the prior two months’ reports. March’s report was revised upward by 11K to 203K from 192K while February’s job totals was also revised higher to 222K from 197K.

The new report shows the economy created 36,000 additional new jobs in the prior two months than had been previously reported.

Average job growth for the last 3 months is now 238K per month.

The private sector job growth continued strong in April. The Private sector produced 273,000 jobs, which was above the 220,000 level reported in Wednesday’s ADP report.

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The nation’s Unemployment Rate plunged to 6.3% in April from 6.7% in March (Feb: 6.7%, Jan: 6.6% Dec: 6.7%, Nov: 7.0%). This was higher than expectations for a rate of 6.6%.

April’s unemployment rate is the lowest since September, 2008.

The Labor Force Participation Rate, came in at 62.8%, which was lower than March’s revised level of 63.2% (Feb: 63.0, Jan: 63.0%, Dec: 62.3, Nov: 63.0%).

The level of long-term unemployed fell by 287,000, which was the biggest drop since October 2011.

Next, the average number of weekly hours worked was reported at 34.5, which was in line with the expectations for 34.5 and last month’s 34.5.

Finally, the average hourly earnings of workers was unchanged which was below the consensus expectations for an increase of +0.2%.

Stock futures surged higher upon release the news, then immediately pulled back on concerns that such a strong improvement in the Unemployment Rate may force the Fed to take action sooner than anticipated.

Tags: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Posted in: Economics Pre-Market Outlook Best of Benzinga