UPDATE: US economy adds 120K jobs, jobless rate at 8.2 pct - WKOW 27: Madison, WI Breaking News, Weather and Sports

UPDATE: US economy adds 120K jobs, jobless rate at 8.2 pct

WASHINGTON (WKOW) -- The unemployment rate dipped in March, but experts say mostly because more Americans stopped looking for work.

The Labor Department says the economy added 120,000 jobs last month, down from more than 200,000 in each of the previous three months.

The unemployment rate fell to 8.2 percent, the lowest since January 2009. The rate dropped because fewer people searched for jobs. The official unemployment tally only includes those seeking work.

The economy has added 858,000 jobs since December -- the best four months of hiring in two years.

*********

WASHINGTON (WKOW) -- The Labor Department will release the March jobs report Friday morning. Some experts are predicting another good month of hiring in March.

Economists expect that U.S. employers added 210,000 jobs last month. However, it's not all good news. They also predict the unemployment rate will stay at 8.3 percent for the third straight month.

If their predictions are correct, the economy would have added an average of 236,000 jobs per month since December. That's the most for a four-month period in almost six years. It would also mark the first time the economy has created at least 200,000 jobs in four straight months since early 2000.

Powered by Frankly