US job growth continues, but outlook is fragile

In the aftermath of the COVID-19 pandemic, the US job market has continued to add jobs month after month, with a 38-month streak of job gains as of March 2023. The economy has seen a rise in hiring in sectors such as healthcare and state and local government, as the labor market continues to cope with workforce shortages and an aging population.

While the number of job openings remains high and layoffs are down, quit rates have returned to pre-COVID levels, indicating less dynamic wage growth. The unemployment rate has remained low but has been gradually rising since November 2022, and consumers expect their incomes to decline in the coming months.

These factors indicate a fragile outlook for the job market, and all eyes are on the upcoming unemployment numbers for March 2023 to see if the trend of job growth continues or if the labor market is slowing down. A rise in unemployment could signal slower economic growth and may prompt the Federal Reserve to consider interest rate cuts to stimulate the economy.

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