(NBC News) The government’s January jobs report shows American businesses created 257,000 new jobs last month, much more than economists expected.
The Labor Department also added 147,000 more jobs than first reported for December.
Add it all up and American workers saw 3.1-million new jobs hit the market last year, the best year for job growth since 1999.
The unemployment rate actually went up a bit to 5.7 percent because more people are looking for jobs.
“We finally started bringing in the 35-40 year olds who ahd fallen out of the labor force. They did begin to throw their hat in the ring,” says Mesirow Financial economist Diane Swonk.
A lot of those new jobs were in retail, construction and health care, boosted, analysts think, by more people getting insurance under the Affordable Care Act.
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