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Slow Growth: 115,000 Jobs Added In April, Unemployment Rate Down

The nation added 115,000 jobs in April, far below expectations and a drop from March’s revised payroll growth of 154,000, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Friday. The closely watched unemployment rate dipped again to 8.1 percent – its lowest level since January 2009 (7.8 percent) when President Obama took office – a function of a sharp drop in the nation’s labor force. Payroll gains for February and March were revised, adding 19,000 to the February numbers and 34,000 to March. The average workweek remained at 34.5 hours – still below the level when the recession began in December 2007 (34.6) and average hourly earnings improved by one cent. The number of people not in the labor force increased, as both the number of people employed and unemployed declined.

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