published Friday, May 4th, 2012

Jobless rate dips to 8.1 percent

FILE - In a Friday, April 20, 2012 file photo, Tom Holloway looks for work at a sign board at JobTrain, an employment center, in Menlo Park, Calif. According to an Associated Press survey of 32 leading economists, hiring through the rest of 2012 will lag behind the brisk pace set early this year, but it will be strong enough to push the unemployment rate below 8 percent by Election Day. The survey results come before a report Friday, May 4, on hiring during April. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)
FILE - In a Friday, April 20, 2012 file photo, Tom Holloway looks for work at a sign board at JobTrain, an employment center, in Menlo Park, Calif. According to an Associated Press survey of 32 leading economists, hiring through the rest of 2012 will lag behind the brisk pace set early this year, but it will be strong enough to push the unemployment rate below 8 percent by Election Day. The survey results come before a report Friday, May 4, on hiring during April. (AP Photo/Paul Sakuma, File)
Photo by Associated Press /Chattanooga Times Free Press.
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The U.S. economy added a modest 115,000 nonfarm jobs in April, but the unemployment rate still fell by 0.1 percent to 8.1 percent, the government reported today.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said employment increased in professional and business services, retail trade, and health care, but declined in transportation and warehousing. In its monthly jobs report, the government the number of unemployed persons, 12.5 million, changed very little from April.

Last month’s employment gain was the smallest so far this year. But the government revised upward its earlier estimates of job gains.

The change in total nonfarm payroll employment for February was revised from again of 240,000 to a gain of 259,000, and the change for March was revised from a gain of 120,000 to a gain of 154,000.

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