In plain English, 175,000 jobs were added last month but unemployment actually rose a tenth of a percent because more of the population was looking for work. The unemployment rate ticked up to 7.6%, driven by an equal increase in the labor force participation rate which rose to 63.4%. This means that the job gains essentially covered population growth. The participation rate remains far removed from the recent high of 66.2% back in January 2008.
Overall, the news is good but not great. A 7.6% unemployment rate would have been considered drastically high ten years ago, and millions of people remain on the sidelines of the labor market.
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