The U.S. Labor Department reported that nonfarm payrolls rose by 467,000 in January, well above analysts’ expectations of an increase of 150,000 jobs.
According to the report, the private sector has created 444,000 new jobs, while the government has created 23,000 new jobs.
But the unemployment rate rose to 4.0%, above the 3.9% expected by analysts.
The Labor Department also revised the November payroll increase to 647,000 from the previously reported 249,000 and the December payroll increase to 510,000 from the previously reported 199,000 jobs.
At the same time, the average hourly earnings of employees increased by 0.7%.
The hourly wage figure is an important indicator of inflation for the U.S. Federal Reserve (Fed). Rising wages can be seen as long-term indicators of rising inflation, as companies may pass on higher costs to consumers through price increases.
The labor force participation rate rose to 62.2% in January from 61.9% in December. This indicates that the number of people looking for work or actively working has increased slightly.