US economy adds 290,000 new jobs

Unemployment rate rose too as thousands who had given up on jobs resumed job-hunting.

    Obama praised the jobs numbers as a positive sign, but acknowledged unemployment remains high [AFP]

    Roughly 25 per cent of the new jobs are temporary positions - part-time workers who will help the US government conduct its decennial census this year.

    But the report still beat expectations as the economy created 231,000 private-sector jobs, when most economists had predicted a growth of just 162,000 new jobs last month.

    This was the largest single-month gain since March 2006.

    Unemployment surge

    There was an apparent contradiction in the jobs numbers released. While the US economy created new jobs, the US unemployment rate also increased.

    That is because more than 195,000 people "re-entered" the labour force: People who had previously given up looking for work started job-hunting again, and that pushed up the unemployment rate.

    "Workers who had dropped out of the workforce entirely are now ... seeking jobs again, encouraged by better prospects," Obama said.

    But Obama acknowledged that the US economy still has a long way to go before making up the losses of the last few years.

    More than eight million Americans lost their jobs in 2008 and 2009.

    Economists say the US economy would have to create more than 400,000 jobs per month in order to reduce the unemployment rate to 6 per cent by the end of 2013.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    Interactive: Coding like a girl

    What obstacles do young women in technology have to overcome to achieve their dreams? Play this retro game to find out.

    Heron Gate mass eviction: 'We never expected this in Canada'

    Hundreds face mass eviction in Canada's capital

    About 150 homes in one of Ottawa's most diverse and affordable communities are expected to be torn down in coming months

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    I remember the day … I designed the Nigerian flag

    In 1959, a year before Nigeria's independence, a 23-year-old student helped colour the country's identity.