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March Jobs Report Worse Than Expected, Unemployment Rises To 4.4%

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March Jobs Report Worse Than Expected, Unemployment Rises To 4.4%

On Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics released employment data for the month of March, and the numbers were staggering.

Here’s a rundown of everything you need to know.

What You Need To Know About The Jobs Report

The nonfarm payroll number came in at -701,000, well worse than consensus economist expectations of -100,000.

The unemployment rate increased 0.9% to 4.4%.

Average hourly earnings were up 0.3% in the month to $28.62.

Economists say actual job numbers for the month of March were likely much worse than the report indicates given the methodology used to create the estimate relies on data from the first half of the month, prior to the widespread COVID-19 shutdowns.

See Also: How To Make Sure You Get The Largest Possible COVID-19 Stimulus Check

The leisure and hospitality industry industry led the losses in March by dropping 459,000 jobs, more than any other industry. The health care and social assistance industry was also hit hard, losing 61,000 jobs.

In addition to the brutal March numbers, the Labor Department also revised its jobs growth estimates for the last two months as well. The Labor Department lowered its January estimate by 59,000 jobs to +214,000 and raised its February estimate by 2,000 jobs to +275,000.

Market Reaction To The Jobs Report

COVID-19 ended a historic streak of 113 consecutive months of U.S. jobs growth, by far the longest streak in history (48 months from 1986 to 1990).

Investors initially reacted negatively to the jobs numbers, with the SPDR S&P 500 ETF Trust (NYSE: SPY) trading down by 0.2% in pre-market trading.

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