U.S. adds robust 916,000 jobs in March, jobless rate falls to 6%

©Kyodo News

The U.S. economy generated 916,000 nonfarm jobs in March, the strongest gains since August, while the unemployment rate edged down 0.2 percentage point from February to 6.0 percent, the Labor Department said Friday.

Growth in nonfarm payrolls exceeded the market consensus of an increase of 647,000, reflecting the continued resumption of economic activity that has been curbed amid the coronavirus pandemic.

The department revised upward the nonfarm payrolls growth reported for February from 379,000 to 468,000. The January figure was also up from 166,000 to 233,000.

In March, private industry generated 780,000 jobs, while the government added 136,000 jobs, according to the department.

Job growth in the reported month was widespread, with the largest gains occurring in leisure and hospitality, public and private education, and construction, it said.

Hourly pay in the private sector, a key factor behind consumer spending, averaged $29.96, down from $30.00 the previous month.