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U.S. adds jobs; unemployment rate falls to 6.3%

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WASHINGTON (May 2, 2014) — Non-farm payroll employment rose by 288,000 jobs in April, and the unemployment rate fell to 6.3 percent from 6.7 percent, according to the latest figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).

Also, the official number of unemployed persons fell 733,000 to 9.8 million, the BLS said.

The April employment news was better than expected, representing the largest monthly employment gain in more than two years and the lowest unemployment rate in more than five.

However, not everyone was pleased with the April figures. Scott Paul, president of the Alliance for American Manufacturing, noted that only 12,000 of the newly created jobs were in manufacturing.

“The weather-related spring surge just didn’t happen for the manufacturing sector,” Mr. Paul said. “It’s past time to address some of the challenges facing job creation. We need new investments in infrastructure and a plan to lower the trade deficit in manufactured goods.”

Professional and business services enjoyed the biggest jobs increase in April, with 75,000. Other sectors that had major job gains were retail trade (up 35,000), food services and drinking places (up 33,000) and construction (up 32,000).

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