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**MNI 5 Things: US Payrolls Ripping +313k, Earnings +0.1%>

--5 Things We Learned From The February Employment Data
By Kevin Kastner, Sara Haire and Holly Stokes
     WASHINGTON (MNI) - The following are the key points from the 
February employment report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics 
     - The payrolls data were very strong and could cause some 
indigestion for market participants. The data show payrolls rose 
313,000, a much larger gain than expected and following a sharp net 
upward revision to December and January payrolls. Other data were more 
in line with expectations, with the unemployment rate holding steady at 
4.1% and hourly earnings up 0.1% (+0.14976%, very close to +0.2%) for a 
2.6% year/year pace vs 2.8% year/year in January. Hourly earnings were 
unrevised at +0.3% for January. 
     - Analysts had expected a 0.2% rise for hourly earnings, and 
today's unrounded data shows it was almost rounded up to that point. 
However, today's hourly earnings print was well below the 0.3% gain in 
the whisper number, so that should provide some offset to the very 
strong payrolls number. Average weekly hours bounced back up to 34.5 in 
the month from 34.4 in January, along with payrolls lifting aggregate 
hours by 0.6%. 
     - The jump in nonfarm payrolls included a 287,000 gain in private 
jobs, also well above the 200,000 gain expected. An MNI analysis had 
shown a tendency of analysts to underestimate payrolls in February, with 
low misses in each of the last six years, so today's result continues 
that trend. 
     - Payrolls in December and January were revised up by a net 54,000, 
reflecting a upward revision to both December and January. The stronger 
growth in February payrolls was led by strong gains in construction 
(+61k), retail (+50k), government (+26k), and temporary help services 
     - The unemployment rate stayed at 4.1% (4.142% vs 4.149% in 
January). Both household employment and unemployment rose while the 
participation rate rose by 0.3pp to 63.0%. The U-6 Rate held steady at 
     ** MNI Washington Bureau: 202-371-2121 ** 

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