Financial News

  • 10 March 2014, 13:09

US Jobs Up As Part-Time Work Hits New Record

The number of new jobs in the United States accelerated in February, as the number of part-time workers in the month reached an all-time high.

The rise of 175,000 jobs helped ease fears of an economic slowdown.

The dollar rose sharply on the news and the Federal Reserve is now expected to continue tapering its quantitative easing stimulus package.

The US Labor Department said the 35% job jump comes on the back of 129,000 new positions in January.

The unemployment rate, however, rose 0.1% to 6.7%. The previous figure was at a five-year low.

"This bodes well for the economy since there were massive head winds," Adam Sarhan, chief executive at Sarhan Capital in New York, said.

"This report plays perfectly into the Fed's script of tapering."

US shares opened higher on the data. The British pound dropped at first against the dollar before recovering.

The dollar also hit a six-week high against the yen.

Analysts had expected harsher figures as snow and ice hampered economic activity across swathes of the US.

Economists had expected non-farm payroll numbers rising by only 149,000 jobs.

Revised figures for December and January were also released, showing 25,000 more jobs being created in that period than previously thought.

Last month's weather did impact average working hours, with February being the lowest level since January 2011.

Economists now expect a reversal once the weather improves.

A smaller survey of households, from which the unemployment rate is derived, showed that 6.9 million people with jobs reported they were working part-time.

That was the highest reading for February since the series started in 1978.

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