April 6 (UPI) — Employers added 103,000 positions to the U.S. workforce in March, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Friday — the smallest workforce increase since last fall.
According to Friday’s jobs report, employment continued to trend up in the manufacturing, healthcare and mining sectors.
Manufacturing added 22,000 jobs, with all of the gains in the durable goods component, and healthcare added the same amount. The construction industry, often a key contributor to U.S. workforce growth, lost 15,000 jobs for the month.
The Labor Department said March’s employment numbers were little changed in other major industries, like wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing, information, financial activities, leisure and hospitality and government.
In February, the U.S. economy added 313,000 jobs — an increase of more than 100,000 from January.
March’s unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.1 percent, the report said, and the number of unemployed Americans remained relatively constant, at 6.6 million.
The number of long-term unemployed barely changed, at 1.3 million, and accounted for 20 percent of the total unemployment figure. The Labor Department said rates among the major worker groups showed little or no change in March.
Friday’s report did not reflect the same gains reported by ADP this week, which reported private sector employment up in March by 241,000 jobs.