243,000 jobs added in January; official unemployment rate at 8.3%

It's good news all around for the jobless. It appears that the employment picture is indeed brightening and those who have been unemployed for a long time are finally getting back to work. Every economic sector saw job growth. And beyond that, manufacturing enjoyed a 14 year high in weekly hours and a big bump in overtime worked. Bloomberg: The 243,000 increase in payrolls was the most since April and exceeded all forecasts in a Bloomberg News survey, Labor Department figures showed in Washington. The unemployment rate dropped to 8.3 percent, the lowest since February 2009. The jump in hiring shows companies are gaining confidence the expansion will weather Europe's slump and may boost President Barack Obama's re-election bid. The data come one week after Fed policy makers said the economy wasn't growing fast enough to push down the jobless rate, prompting them to extend a pledge to keep interest rates low for another two years. "Employers are stepping up new hires that had been...(Read Full Post)