Jobs Report Continues to Amaze

Posted by Olivia Grady on Wednesday, March 11th, 2020 at 2:34 pm - Permalink

The February 2020 jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics was once again terrific! 

Last month, total nonfarm payroll employment rose by 273,000, and the unemployment rate was 3.5%. This unemployment rate once again matched the lowest unemployment rate in 50 years, and this month marked the second year of unemployment rates at or below 4%. 

Average hourly earnings also increased in February to $28.52. Over the past 12 months, these earnings have increased by 3%. In fact, February marks the 19th consecutive month that wages have grown at or above 3%. In addition, these gains are not because of minimum wage hikes. As the Council of Economic Advisers explains in its article, “As Job Creation Exceeds Expectations Again, Women Workers See Further Gains:”

“Under President Trump, workers’ wages are continuing to rise faster than managers’—the opposite of what occurred under the previous administration. Evaluating lower-income workers’ wage gains in states that did not raise their minimum wages shows that this recent growth is a result of the strong economy, not minimum wage hikes.”

The jobs numbers also continue to show how well minorities and other historically disadvantaged groups are doing. For example, in February, the unemployment rate for women dropped to the lowest rate since 1953. Women now also make up the majority of payroll employment. 

Finally, the jobs numbers for December and January were increased. December added 37,000 more jobs than previously reported for a total of 184,000. January was revised up by 48,000 for a total of 273,000. This increase in January jobs means that 6.9 million new jobs have been created since January 2017. Further, the Council of Economic Advisers has explained that in the past two months, the U.S. economy has added 105,000 more jobs than the Congressional Budget Office predicted would be added during the entire year of 2020 in its pre-2016 election forecast.

However, the Trump administration isn’t finished working on the employment numbers either. As U.S. Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia says:

“The Department of Labor continues to implement the President’s policies that are helping workers and their families thrive, including closing the skills gap through apprenticeships, and bringing more Americans off the sidelines for good, safe, family-sustaining careers.”

Congratulations to President Donald Trump, Secretary of Labor Eugene Scalia and the Trump administration on another strong jobs report!