Economic Indicators

News from EPI Too Soon to Sound the Alarm, but March Jobs Numbers Should Give Us Pause

It’s too soon to sound the alarm, but this morning’s Employment Situation Report report should give us pause. 126,000 jobs created in March and the downward revision of 38,000 jobs in February, together make for disappointing top line numbers. While it’s important not to put too much stock in a couple months of data—especially given the unusual amount of snow that blanketed the country in the past two months—policymakers should be wary of any signs of any slowdown from the solid job growth over the previous year. Other indicators make it clear that there is still ample slack in the labor market. Private sector hourly wages are up only 2.1 percent over the year. Wages need to grow faster, and for a longer time, before we can say the economy is truly working for working people. This coupled with a few months of disappointing jobs growth mean that the Federal Reserve should not be thinking about tapping the brakes any time soon.

See more work by Elise Gould