At first glance, Friday’s jobs report was really strong. Net payrolls came in at 242,000, beating expectations of 195,000, while the unemployment rate stayed steady at 4.9%
But look deeper and the employment situation was even better for minority workers, according to the report from the Bureau of Labour Statistics.
As New River Investment’s Conor Sen brought to our attention, about 62% of the total job gains in February were for Black or Hispanic workers.
According to the household survey data, there were 530,000 more people employed in the US in February than in January. (As an aside, this is different from the headline non-farm payroll number, which comes from a different survey of business establishments.)
Of those new jobs, 30,000 were for workers identifying as black and 300,000 were for workers identifying as Hispanic.
Additionally, the unemployment rate for black workers has fallen to 8.8% from 10.3% a year ago, and for Hispanics it’s down to 5.4% from 6.7% in February 2014. Those rates are still higher than the white unemployment rate of 4.3% and overall rate of 4.9%.
The gains, however, are encouraging, and should help close the gap between the two numbers.