February Job Growth Report: U.S. Adds 311,000 Jobs

After a remarkable start to the year in January, 311,000 more jobs were added in February, continuing the upward trend in employment for 2023 so far.

Despite the significant number of mass layoffs at the end of 2022 and moving into 2023, the U.S. unemployment rate only rose to 3.6% with the most notable job losses in information, transportation, and warehousing.

Is the U.S. job market growing right now?

Despite thousands upon thousands being laid off in some sectors, most notably tech, jobs continue to grow while the unemployment rate remains fairly static.

U.S. unemployment rates by group:

  • Adult women: 3.2%
  • Adult men: 3.3%
  • Teenagers: 11.1%
  • Whites: 3.2%
  • Blacks: 5.7%
  • Asians: 3.4%
  • Hispanics: 5.3%

Additional employment statistics for February 2023:

  • The number of discouraged workers, who believed that no jobs were available for them, increased slightly from 342,000 in January to 363,000 in February.
  • Average hourly earnings increased by 8 cents in February to $33.09.
  • The number of workers employed part-time for economic reasons remained unchanged at 4.1 million.

U.S. industries with notable job growth in February

Leisure and hospitality

The leisure and hospitality sector saw an increase of 105,000 jobs in February with an average gain of 91,000 over the prior 6 months.

The most notable gains in this sector came from food services and drinking places, which accounted for 70,000 of the jobs added in February.

Retail trade

The retail trade sector added 50,000 jobs in February, accounting for roughly 16% of the overall jobs added in February overall.

The most notable gains were seen in general merchandise retailers with 31,000 jobs.


Continuing the upward trend from January, Government jobs showed an increase in February, adding 46,000 jobs.

The local government subsector added the most jobs in all of government with 37,000.

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