The American financial system added 273,000 jobs in February, the feds stated Friday, indicating sturdy hiring progress earlier than the coronavirus outbreak slammed the US.
The Department of Labor’s month-to-month jobs report far outpaced economists’ expectations that non-farm payrolls would develop by 175,000 jobs. The unemployment price ticked again down to three.5 %, matching a 50-year low.
While the most recent numbers present the lethal coronavirus epidemic has not but hammered the labor market, the worst could also be but to return because the outbreak reduces journey, disrupts provide chains and roils the inventory market. The virus began to unfold within the US late final month and has since killed 12 individuals and contaminated greater than 200 right here.
The February figures “present a snapshot of the state of the labor market earlier than the virus-related harm kicks in, presumably beginning in March and intensifying into the second quarter,” Bloomberg economists Carl Riccadonna, Yelena Shulyatyeva and Andrew Husby wrote in a Friday commentary.
The Federal Reserve instructed the coronavirus might threaten the financial system when it minimize its benchmark rate of interest Tuesday, saying the illness “poses evolving dangers to financial exercise.”
In one other good signal for the labor market, the variety of individuals making use of for unemployment advantages fell barely final week to 216,000, the Labor Department stated Thursday. That quantity doesn’t point out that corporations are beginning to lay off employees amid the coronavirus disaster, in response to Chris Rupkey, chief monetary economist at MUFG Union Bank.
“But we can’t sound the all-clear sign both as a result of the entire variety of individuals on the jobless rolls persevering with to obtain unemployment compensation stays considerably elevated regardless of the strongest financial system in fifty years,” Rupkey stated in a Thursday notice. “That’s not proper.”
With Post wires