The American economy added 175,000 jobs last month, a pace that was better than economists had expected and well above the anemic job gains recorded in December and January.
Still, the latest figures for hiring were down from the average of 189,000 over the past 12 months and fell a bit short of what policy makers had been hoping to see at this stage of the recovery. The unemployment rate rose 0.1 percentage point to 6.7 percent.
The February report by the Labor Department had been eagerly awaited and was viewed as a wild card, with economists struggling to estimate the impact of wintry weather in many parts of the country as well as seasonal adjustments by government statisticians. Read more