In this past week’s labor market reporting, the economy realized impressive employment gains and manufacturing sector strength. As a result, both exceeded expectations. In spite of this positivity, mortgage rates ended the week with little change. Impressive Employment Gains Analysts finally learned the latest on Employment in the report released Friday, April 2nd, 2021. To the surprise of many, the data displayed impressive employment gains. Overall, the United States economy gained 916,000 jobs. This result is far above the consensus forecast of 625,000. In addition, the prior month showed revised results to the addition of 156,000 jobs. In particular, the hospitality and construction sectors exhibited strength. This is fantastic news given that both the hospitality and construction industries suffered at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic. Impressive Employment Gains Lead to Unemployment Rate Decline Because of the impressive employment gains, the unemployment rate saw a decline. Thus, the unemployment rate dropped from 6.2% to 6.0%. This result matched expectations. On the other hand, the economy expressed a decline in average hourly earnings. Generally, economists consider average hourly earnings to be an indicator of wage growth. The average hourly earnings fell slightly from February, below the consensus for a modest increase. [...]
Facilitated by powerful job gains, mortgage rates have been on an upward path this year, potentially influencing rising inflation. Stronger-than-expected economic data caused the trend to continue this week.