The economy added 227,00 jobs in January and the unemployment rate ticked up very slightly to 4.8 percent, according to the latest data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The labor force also grew by 584,000 people last month, raising the labor force participation rate by 0.2 percentage points, meaning more people were looking for work.
While the report is the first released under President Trump, the data can’t be credited to his administration, as it was measured before his inauguration. It’s the last measure of job growth under President Obama.
Trump has frequently panned the unemployment rate, calling it a “hoax.” While it does measure something very real — the share of people actively looking for a job — other measures can paint a fuller picture. The share of Americans who were seeking work, had given up their job search out of frustration or lack of an offer with high enough pay, or were employed part-time but wanting full-time work was 9.4 percent last month, a slight increase from 9.2 percent in December but down from 9.9 percent a year ago.
January’s job gains were led by a 46,000 increase in retail, 36,000 increase in construction, and 32,000 increase in finance. Professional and business services also rose by 23,000, while food and drinking places increased by 30,000 and health care increased by 18,000. Trump has focused on manufacturing employment, and while the overall trend is downward as the industry lost 45,000 jobs last year, it did add 5,000 jobs in January, slightly less than the 17,000 added in December.
Wages also rose in January by 3 cents, for a year over year growth rate of 2.5 percent. That was a slight drop from December’s big gain of 6 cents that was the fastest growth rate of the recovery.