U.S. payroll employment rose 225,000 in January after a gain of 147,000 in December 2019, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday, Feb. 7.

The data for the first month of 2020, that tops all estimates of economists, provides fresh evidence of a durable labor market that gives President Donald Trump an early boost in the election year, according to Bloomberg.

January’s nonfarm payrolls were higher than the average monthly gain of 175,000 in 2019.

Average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 7 cents, or 0.25%, from the prior month to $28.44 in January. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings have increased by 3.1%.

The bureau said the unemployment rate rose to 3.6% in January from a 50-year low of 3.5%, and the number of unemployed persons changed little at 5.9 million.

The civilian labor force rose by 574,000 in January, and the labor force participation rate edged up by 0.2 percentage point to 63.4%. The employment-population ratio, at 61.2%, changed little over the month but was up by a 0.5 percentage point over the year.

President Trump has frequently touted a strong economy, with solid job and wage growth, in his rallies as he seeks to clinch another presidential term.

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