Jobs Recovery

By Isaac Cohen*

                  The March employment figures, released last week by the Labor Department, revealed the weakness in February was just a blink. The vigorous creation in March of 196,000 new, non agricultural jobs in the US economy was indicative of a strong recovery, from the revised figure of 33,000 created in February. The best performing sectors in March were health care services which added 61,000 jobs, business services 37,000 and leisure and hospitality with 33,000, while retail lost 11,700 jobs and manufacturing also lost 6,000. The unemployment rate remained the same, at 3.8 percent and average hourly earnings increased 3.2 percent in March, above the rate of inflation of less than 2 percent.

                  In comparison with the monthly average of 223,000 jobs created in 2018, this year’s first quarter figure of 180,000 is still strong, but it indicates a slowdown, which may be caused by the vanishing stimulus of the tax cuts approved in 2017.

                  For many analysts the recent employment figures supported the patient posture adopted by the Federal Reserve of leaving interest rates unchanged. However, President Donald Trump disagreed. On the same day the March job figures were released President Trump declared, “I personally think the Fed should drop rates.”          

  *International analyst and consultant, former Director ECLAC Washington. Commentator on economic and financial issues for CNN en Español TV and radio, UNIVISION, TELEMUNDO and other media.

About Ramón Jiménez

Ramón Jiménez, Managing Editor de MetroLatinoUSA.Com (MLN). Graduado de la Escuela de Periodismo de la Universidad del Distrito de Columbia (UDC). Email: [email protected]

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