U.S. nonfarm payrolls increased 98k in March following a revised 219k surge in February (was 235k) and the 216k January climb (revised from 238k), for a net -38k downward revision. The unemployment rate dropped to 4.5% from 4.7%. The labor force rose 145k after the prior 340k gain, with household employment up another hefty 472k from 447k. Average hourly earnings were up 0.2% versus 0.3% previously (revised from 0.2%). The workweek was steady at 34.3 (February was revised down from 34.4). For some of the details, private payrolls increased 89k (ADP was 263k), with construction up 6k, goods producing up 28k and manufacturing up 11k. Service providing jobs disappointed, increasing only 61k, with a 27k decline in trade and transport, a 3k slip in information, and a 1k dip in Federal government jobs.
Hence USDCAD drifted back to week’s lows. This move boosted also by Canadian data, since Canada employment improved 19.4k in March after the 15.3k gain in February. The increase in March overshot the more modest gain that was expected, although there was a wide range of estimates for total employment as has been the case since the hiring uptrend began last August. Full time employment grew 18.4k after the 105.1k surge in February.
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