CUNA Research: March Jobs Report shows strong growth
WASHINGTON, DC (April 1, 2022) — Credit Union National Association (CUNA) Senior Economist Dawit Kebede, PhD, issued the following statement in response to the Labor Department’s March Employment Situation:
“The economy posted strong job growth in March as consumer demand continued to increase due to subsiding Omicron cases. The unemployment rate dropped to 3.6% — edging closer to a pre-pandemic level of 3.5%. A quarter of the job gains occurred in leisure and hospitality as consumers are feeling more comfortable traveling and engaging in-person.
“Labor force participation increased slightly indicating more people are re-entering the job market. However, it is still lower than the pre-pandemic participation level, leading employers to increase wages to attract workers. Average hourly earnings increased 5.4% in the last 12 months.
“Continued increase in wage growth will lead to more price increases as businesses transfer these costs to consumers. This impacts low-wage earners who are already struggling to make ends meet with price increases in broad consumer items.”
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