US: Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 304K in January vs 165K expected


"Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 304,000 in January, and the unemployment rate edged up to 4.0 percent," the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday.

Key takeaways from the press release

  • Both the unemployment rate, at 4.0 percent, and the number of unemployed persons, at 6.5 million, edged up in January.
  • The impact of the partial federal government shutdown contributed to the uptick in these measures.
  • The labor force participation rate, at 63.2 percent, and the employment-population ratio, at 60.7 percent, changed little over the month; both measures were up by 0.5 percentage point over the year. 
  • The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 34.5 hours in January.
  • In January, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 3 cents to $27.56, following a 10-cent gain in December. 
  • Over the year, average hourly earnings have increased by 85 cents, or 3.2 percent.

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