Announced this morning, the economy added 431,000 jobs in March, a bit less than expected, with higher revisions to the previous month. The Leisure and Hospitality, Retail Trade, and Professional and Business industries were all strong, while the Transportation and Warehousing industry was weak. The Unemployment Rate ticked two tenths lower to 3.6% and the Labor Force Participation Rate at 62.4% is slightly higher than the previous month. Average Hourly Earnings increased 5.6% on an annual basis, slightly more than expected, and Average Weekly Hours were 34.6, one tenth lower than the previous month. Overall, a strong report, despite a slightly lower headline number than expected, as the previous month was revised higher, and the unemployment rate fell even as individuals continue to re-enter the labor force. Meanwhile, average hourly earnings increasing slightly higher than expected highlights the inflationary pressures in the current environment. While more jobs are still needed to replace the losses during the pandemic, the labor market is tight and should allow the Federal Reserve to focus on fighting inflation by tightening policy in the months ahead. In all, U.S. 10-year treasury yield ticks higher following the report and equity futures are also higher as we head into the market open.
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