Employers pulled back sharply on hiring last month, a reminder that the U.S. economy may not be growing fast enough to sustain robust job growth. Our Erin Connolly has more on what the latest numbers mean.
ALBANY, N.Y. -- The Labor Department released its latest jobs report Friday and it came with mostly disappointing news. On the upside, the unemployment rate dipped to 8.2 percent during the month of March, the lowest since January 2009. But financial analysts are quick to say unemployment only fell because more Americans have stopped looking for work.
Financial advisor Jason Heller said, ''Obviously there's an unemployment problem in this country. We lost so many jobs in the big financial meltdown and we have a long way to go.''
In other troubling news, the Labor Department says the economy only added 120,000 jobs in March. That's much less than the 203,000 jobs many economists had predicted. On the bright side, more than 858,000 jobs have been added since December, the best four months of hiring in two years.
Heller said, ''Everyone's been feeling good the last few months. We're adding 200,000 jobs plus a month, stock markets going up and then all of a sudden we get this low jobs report and people are concerned the whole recovery is in jeopardy.''
But speaking to a crowd Friday, President Obama reassured Americans that we are on the right path to a full recovery. And that while it will take time, there has already been great improvement.
President Obama said, "Right now no issue is more important than restoring economic security for all of our families in the wake of the greatest recession since the Great Depression. That begins with everyone who wants a job can get a job.''
But it's clear, we have our work cut out for us to make that goal a reality.
Heller said, ''We've got 12.7 million people out of work and to add those jobs back, you can't do it at 120,000 a month. It's going to take a long time.''