US non-farm employers created 227,000 jobs in February, a keenly-watched report from the Department of Labor shows.
The Employment Situation report reveals that employment rose in the professional and businesses services, healthcare and social assistance, leisure and hospitality, manufacturing and mining sectors last month.
In addition, the department revised up previous months’ employment gains. December’s job growth was amended from 203,000 to 223,000 while January’s moved from 243,000 to 284,000.
The US unemployment rate stood at 8.3% in February, unchanged from the previous month but significantly below the level seen throughout most of 2011.
Paul Ashworth, chief US economist at Capital Economics, says: “February’s employment report adds to the evidence that the US labour market has turned a corner. There’s every chance that March will bring more of the same.”
Unemployment is one of the issues being fiercely debated in the run-up to the presidential election in November.