Posted at: 05/03/2013 8:14 AM
Updated at: 05/03/2013 2:26 PM
By: CHRISTOPHER S. RUGABER, AP Economics Writer
WASHINGTON (AP) - Not only is the job report for April better than many economists expected -- it turns out February and March are looking better as well.
The Labor Department is reporting that the economy added 165,000 jobs in April -- but also that the numbers for the previous two months were far higher than initially reported.
Overall, the economy has now created an average of 208,000 jobs a month from November through April -- above the 138,000 added in the previous six months.
The chief economist at Wells Fargo, John Silvia, calls it "a good report." He says the stronger job growth suggests that federal budget cutting "does not mean recession" or a "dramatic slowdown."
The unemployment rate has now fallen by 0.4 percentage points since the start of the year, though it remains high. The Federal Reserve has said it plans to keep short-term rates at record lows at least until unemployment falls to 6.5 percent.
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