The US economy added 916,000 jobs in March, the largest increase since August, bringing the unemployment rate to 6.0%, 0.2 percentage points less than in February, the Labor Department reported on Friday.

However, even as the economy begins to recover from restrictions to stop the spread of covid-19, there are still 8.4 million fewer jobs than before the pandemic, the government said.

“Job growth was widespread in March, with gains in the leisure and hospitality sector, public and private education and construction,” the statistics office said in a statement.

These figures exceed analysts’ expectations and reflect that the recovery thanks to the vaccination campaign and the improvement in the outlook has been more widespread than was initially projected.

Unemployment is a key vital sign about the state of the economy and the dynamism of the recovery, and US President Joe Biden is scheduled to appear on Friday to discuss the numbers.

According to the government, “this improvement in the labor market reflects the continued resumption of economic activity that had been constrained by the pandemic.”

Regarding the scars left by this crisis, statistics show that the number of long-term unemployed – without employment for more than 27 weeks – stood at 4.2 million, almost unchanged from last month.

Since February 2020, before the pandemic crisis broke out and when unemployment stood at 3.5%, this group had 3.1 million fewer people.

hs/dw/mps-an/rsr

Read more