Published: Mon, May 06, 2019
Markets | By Otis Pena

Radio Recap: Unemployment at Record Low

Radio Recap: Unemployment at Record Low

Average hourly pay rose 3.2 percent from 12 months earlier, a healthy increase that matched the increase in March. Workers put in fewer hours in April. "While payroll gains are handily exceeding the threshold necessary to drive the unemployment rate lower, the drop in April - to 3.6 percent - is largely attributable to declining participation".

The unemployment rate is expected to have held steady at 3.8 percent in April as more people searched for work. Some have taken a range of steps to fill jobs, including training more entry-level workers, loosening educational requirements and raising pay sharply.

The retail sector also suffered yet more job losses, with 12,000 positions cut.

The jobless rate slid from 3.8% in March to hit the lowest level since December 1969.

Government hiring also was the strongest in eight months, with 27,000 jobs created.

And inflation has for several years defied the usual logic that low unemployment should cause wages and prices to rise. This record low unemployment, not seen in an entire generation, demonstrates the economy's robust growth.

The report was broadly supportive of the Federal Reserve's decision on Wednesday to keep interest rates unchanged and signal little desire to adjust monetary policy anytime soon.

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Wall Street celebrated the news as stocks ticked upwards Friday.

Labor participation. This critical employment metric -which is far more indicative of the health of the jobs market than the widely watched unemployment rate - slipped by 0.2 percent to 62.8 percent as the American labor force shrunk by approximately 490,000 workers.

A broader measure of unemployment, which includes people who want to work but have given up searching and those working part-time because they can not find full-time employment, was unchanged at 7.3% in April.

FBN's Edward Lawrence breaks down the April jobs report.

"With the US economy strong and stocks near record levels, retirees' and workers' confidence in having enough money for retirement rose over the past year to new highs, according to a long-running survey released Tuesday".

Employment increased in the leisure and hospitality, professional and business services, healthcare, transportation and warehousing, and financial activities industries. The rate for Latinos dropped to 4.2 percent, a record low since 1973, when the government began tracking the data.

Temporary help, a harbinger for future hiring, rebounded last month after dropping in March.

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