Op-Ed: Unemployment rate ticks up — find out why this is good news for the economy

This article originally appeared on Fox News on February 9, 2019.

There have been many spectacular jobs reports over the past three years, but the January 2020 jobs report is really quite exceptional. It’s one of the most encouraging jobs reports I’ve seen in some time.

The topline figures are plenty impressive on their own. The country added 225,000 new jobs in the first month of 2020, blowing away economists’ projections, which called for a mere 164,000 new jobs.

Wage growth also remained strong, at 3.1 percent, which is particularly impactful in light of the low, stable inflation that we’re currently enjoying. Pay raises aren’t just offsetting increases in the cost of living; they’re allowing workers to materially improve their quality of life. Wages for non-supervisory employees are also continuing to rise faster (3.3 percent) than those of their managers (2.5 percent), continuing the blue-collar wage boom, reducing income inequality and proving that companies are genuinely committed to investing in their workforces.

None of that is particularly unusual or surprising these days, of course. The Trump economy has been putting up these sorts of numbers for quite some time now. Last month was a little better than average, but not by an extraordinary degree.

One anomaly that did stand out, though, was the unemployment rate. While it continues to hover near a 50-year low, the jobless rate actually ticked up a smidgeon to 3.6 percent, despite robust job creation in January. The U.S. economy typically only needs to add about 150,000 jobs per month to offset population growth and keep the unemployment rate stable, so this is not what one would normally expect to see.

Click here to read the full article.

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