The unemployment rate declined to 4.5 percent in March, and total nonfarm payroll employment edged up by 98,000, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment increased in professional and business services
and in mining, while retail trade lost jobs.
Household Survey Data
The unemployment rate decreased by 0.2 percentage point to 4.5 percent in March, and the number of unemployed persons declined by 326,000 to 7.2 million. Both measures were down over the year.
“This raises the stakes for the April report,” said Joshua Shapiro, chief United States economist at MFR, a research firm. “You need to see things pick up in April, or else March won’t look like aberration.”