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January Jobs Numbers: Nearly Double Expected Gain, Best Month Since 2015

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The U.S. economy seems to have entered the new year rock steady as non-farm, private-sector employment expanded by a staggering 291,000 jobs this past January.

According to ADP and Moody Analytics’ most recent National Employment Report, the rapid surge in job growth signified the single best month for private-sector payrolls since May 2015, bringing with it roughly 45,000 franchise employment opportunities and more than double that in the way of small business hirings.

“The labor market experienced expanded payrolls in January,” ADP Research Institute Vice President Ahu Yildirmaz said in a Wednesday news release. “Goods producers added jobs, particularly in construction and manufacturing, while service providers experienced a large gain, led by leisure and hospitality.”

“Job creation was strong among midsized companies, though small companies enjoyed the strongest performance in the last 18 months,” Yildirmaz added.

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This January growth nearly doubled that of numerous highly regarded Wall Street projections, all of which estimated expansion would fall somewhere in the ballpark of 150,000 jobs created, UPI reported.

Instead, the leisure and hospitality, and education and health services industries alone managed to combine for 166,000 total jobs.

The leisure and hospitality itself contributed 96,000 with “an outsized increase in jobs” — the potential product of increased commerce driven by a calm early winter, Moody Analytics’ chief economist Mark Zandi wrote.

“It’s juiced by very mild winter weather,” Zandi told CNBC. “The fingerprints of that are all over this report.”

Zandi did warn, however, against the expectation that such numbers would be the yearlong trend.

“Abstracting from the vagaries of the data underlying job growth is close to 125,000 per month, which is consistent with low and stable unemployment,” the economist wrote.

President Donald Trump boasted heavily with regard to the U.S. economy during the State of the Union address Tuesday evening, touting, among other accomplishments, 50-year low unemployment under his administration.

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“Incredibly, the average unemployment rate under my administration is lower than any administration in the history of our country,” Trump said.

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“If we had not reversed the failed economic policies of the previous administration, the world would not now be witness to America’s great economic success.”

“This is a blue-collar boom,” the president went on to say.

On Friday, the U.S. Department of Labor will release its own official jobs report regarding the last quarter of 2019.

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Andrew J. Sciascia was the supervising editor of features at The Western Journal. Having joined up as a regular contributor of opinion in 2018, he went on to cover the Barrett confirmation and 2020 presidential election for the outlet, regularly co-hosting its video podcast, "WJ Live," as well.
Andrew J. Sciascia was the supervising editor of features at The Western Journal and regularly co-hosted the outlet's video podcast, "WJ Live."

Sciascia first joined up with The Western Journal as a regular contributor of opinion in 2018, before graduating with a degree in criminal justice and political science from the University of Massachusetts Lowell, where he served as editor-in-chief of the student newspaper and worked briefly as a political operative with the Massachusetts Republican Party.

He covered the Barrett confirmation and 2020 presidential election for The Western Journal. His work has also appeared in The Daily Caller.