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January Payroll Growth Strengthens, But Wage Growth Slows

The U.S. added 227,000 jobs in January, according to the Labor Department’s employment report. That was substantially more than the 175,000 new jobs that economists were expecting. The unemployment rate was 4.8%, a tick higher than last month’s 4.7% and a little higher than expectations. The labor force participation rate rose slightly 62.9%. The big disappointment in the report was wage growth. Average hourly earnings rose by just 0.1% when 0.3% was expected. Plus, December’s wage growth was revised lower to just 0.2% from a 0.4% increase originally reported. Treasuries rallied. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note fell to 2.45%, 2 basis points lower than Thursday’s close.

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