Chart of the Day: Net New Jobs in April

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The American economy added 160,000 new jobs last month, 90,000 of which were needed to keep up with population growth. This means that net job growth clocked in at a sluggish 70,000 jobs. The number of workers in the labor force declined, but the number of unemployed also declined, which means the headline unemployment rate stayed steady at 5.0 percent. Public sector employment decreased by 11,000 jobs.

Hourly earnings of production and nonsupervisory employees were up at an annual rate of about 2.9 percent compared to last month, which is only slightly higher than the rate of inflation. However, weekly hours worked were up, which means weekly earnings increased at a healthy annual rate of 6.7 percent.

Bottom line: not horrible but nothing to write home about. The economy is growing, but overall we seem to remain mired in a great stagnation.

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We've never been very good at being conservative.

And usually, that serves us well in doing the ambitious, hard-hitting journalism that you turn to Mother Jones for. But it also means we can't afford to come up short when it comes to scratching together the funds it takes to keep our team firing on all cylinders, and the truth is, we finished our budgeting cycle on June 30 about $100,000 short of our online goal.

This is no time to come up short. It's time to fight like hell, as our namesake would tell us to do, for a democracy where minority rule cannot impose an extreme agenda, where facts matter, and where accountability has a chance at the polls and in the press. If you value our reporting and you can right now, please help us dig out of the $100,000 hole we're starting our new budgeting cycle in with an always-needed and always-appreciated donation today.

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