The U.S. labor market is catching up to a rebound long seen in other parts of the economy.
Employers added 192,000 jobs in February, which was more than expected, and the most since May last year.
And figures for December and January were revised up, according to the Labor Department.
Meanwhile – the unemployment rate surprisingly dropped to 8.9 percent as more job seekers found work last month.
The unemployment rate now sits near a two-year low.
John Silvia, chief economist at Wells Fargo, calls the report encouraging.
“Simply because it does suggest that this is a sustainable pace of job growth. It was nice to see the unemployment rate down a little bit. It was good to see that most of the job growth was in fact in the private sector. I think those are all good signs telling us that we have sustained economic growth and a better labor market.”
But some economists are now finding something else to worry about – wages. Average hourly earnings rose one cent in February, hardly enough they say, for pay checks to keep up with much higher prices at the pump.
Bottom Line: The U.S. economy saw its strongest job creation in nine months and the closely-watched unemployment rate surprisingly fell to roughly a two-year low, adding strength to an improving economic recovery.