Chart of the Day: Net New Jobs in February

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The American economy added 235,000 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 145,000 jobs—nearly all of it in the private sector. The headline unemployment rate stayed steady at 4.7 percent. That’s not bad, and behind the scenes the news was even more positive. The labor force participation rate ticked up to 63 percent; the number of unemployed dropped by 107,000; 176,000 people joined the labor force; and the ranks of the employed went up by nearly half a million.

But how about wages? Hourly earnings of production and nonsupervisory employees went up at an annual rate of about 2.3 percent. That’s about even with the inflation rate last month, which means the real increase was close to zero. That’s disappointing given recent signs that wages were starting to make gains.

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And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

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THE TRUTH IS...

what drives Mother Jones' team of 50-plus journalists. The truth is powerful, as evidenced by how hard those with something to hide, or profit to gain, seek to discredit it. The truth, stated boldly and reported meticulously, is what draws so many readers to Mother Jones.

And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

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