The unemployment rate dropped to 6.3% in April after 800,000 Americans left the labor force.
Near a million Americans gave up looking for work in April.
The number of people not in the labor force soared to 92 million, the second highest monthly increase ever, or 988K, only ‘better’ than January 2012 which curiously was the one month when the establishment survey reported a 360K “increase” in jobs.
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One cloud in today’s employment report is worker pay is stagnating. Average hourly earnings held at $24.31 in April, and were up 1.9 percent over the past 12 months, the smallest gain this year.
The drop in the unemployment rate from March’s 6.7 percent came as the agency’s survey of households showed the labor force shrank by more the 800,000 in April. The so-called participation rate, which indicates the share of working-age people in the labor force, decreased to 62.8 percent, matching the lowest level since 1978, from 63.2 percent a month earlier.