Here is what may be causing the nation’s employment numbers mystery


    How is the country generating so many jobs even while the unemployment rate has drifted up? Experts are increasingly pointing to rising immigration as the answer to the job figures mystery, The Wall Street Journal reports

    Rising immigration not only explains inconsistencies in the jobs data but suggests the economy can keep adding plenty of jobs without overheating, which would also allow the Federal Reserve to still consider interest rate cuts.

    The Labor Department’s Bureau of Labor Statistics bases its monthly employment figures on two surveys. One survey of about 119,000 businesses and government agencies, called the establishment survey, is the main source for determining how many jobs the U.S. added each month. The other, a rotating survey of about 60,000 households, is used to calculate the unemployment rate and includes a separate employment estimate.

    Data in the two surveys never precisely matches, but recently, the differences between the two have become extreme. 

    The establishment survey shows there were about 2.7 million more jobs in February than a year earlier. But household survey figures adjusted to match the establishment survey’s employment concept show the economy added less than half as many jobs. The unemployment rate rose to 3.9% from 3.6% during that period. 

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