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Posted on : Tuesday 16th June 2020 04:16 PM

Hiring Slows as U.S. Adds 20K Jobs in February

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Harsh winter weather and a fractional government shutdown could be to blame for the smallest monthly job gains in nearly a year and a half. According to the Bureau of Labor Statisitics, U.S. employers added only 20,000 jobs in February. This tepid tempo comes after a huge 311,000 jobs were added in January. The unemployment rate decreased to 3.8 percent, which is near the smallest unemployment level in five decades.

The U.S. manufacturing sector also suffered minimal gains in February, posting only 4,000 new jobs. Over the past year, the sector saw normal increases of 22,000 new jobs per month.

"Manufacturing scarcely continued a benefit run of job gains in February,” said Alliance for American Manufacturing President Scott Paul. “While it's too early to tell whether this is a trend or a blip, there are policies that can boost factory jobs. Infrastructure investment, which has broad, bipartisan appeal, would be a good launch.”

Employment in other major industries, including mining, retail trade, transportation and warehousing, information, financial activities, and government, showed little or no change over the month.

"The trade deficit with China may also be dampening the full potential of American manufacturing,” Paul said. “This makes a tough, enforceable deal with China even more important. We urge the administration not to settle for the sake of expediency."

The Associated Press states that unseasonably cold weather in February that hit some areas of the country could have affected job growth in some industries such as construction and restaurants. The 35-day government shutdown—which ended in late January — could have also influenced job growth.

Regardless of the slowdown, most professionals anticipate growth to rebound in the April-June quarter. However, getting a perfect read on the economy could be more hard than usual as many data reports resume to be slowed due to the partial government shutdown.

This article is originally posted on TRONSERVE.COM

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