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US jobs picture is good news/bad news
US jobs picture is good news/bad news

U.S. economy nears full employment

The national unemployment rate hit 3.9 percent in April as employers added 164,000 jobs, according to data released Friday.

That was the lowest monthly employment rate since 2000, and it ended a string of 4.1 percent unemployment that dated back to October, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ monthly jobs report.

The U.S. economy, which has been expanding for about nine years, has added jobs every month for the past seven and a half years, the longest streak ever.

Average earnings rose by four cents per hour last month.

A contraction in the labor force was one reason for the drop in joblessness: An estimated 236,000 people who were working, or were looking for work, dropped out of the job market last month, according to reports.

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