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United States Unemployment March 2024

United States: Job gains beat market expectations in March

Total non-farm payrolls grew by 303,000 in March, up from 270,000 in February and beating market expectations by around 50%. Job gains occurred in health care, government, and construction. The unemployment rate was 3.8% in March, down from 3.9% in February.

All in all, the March figures show that the labor market remained in good shape at the end of Q1 2024, boding well for private consumption. The data could encourage the Fed to hold off from making rate cuts in the near term.

On the labor market, TD Economics’ Thomas Feltmate said:

“Through the first quarter, the U.S. economy added an impressive 829k new jobs – nearly a 200k more than in the fourth quarter of last year. With job openings still elevated and stronger immigration flows helping to alleviate some of the constraints on labor supply, job growth has the potential to run in the 150k-200k range through the remainder of the year.”

On monetary policy, Nomura analysts said:

“Strong labor data will not prevent the Fed from cutting rates in our view, but it will allow officials to remain patient about waiting for a convincing slowdown in inflation. This supports our expectation that the first rate cut will likely be delayed until July.”

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