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The Labor Department, which carried out its surveys at the same time that the snowstorms battered the East Coast, said in a report Friday that nonfarm payrolls fell by 36,000 compared with a revised 26,000 drop in January.
Economists polled by Dow Jones Newswires were expecting payrolls to fall by 75,000 mainly because of the severe weather. The January figure was revised from an originally reported 20,000 decline.
The unemployment rate, which is calculated using a different household survey, remained at 9.7% last month. Economists had forecast the jobless rate would edge higher to 9.8%.
"Severe winter weather in parts of the country may have affected payroll employment and hours; however, it is not possible to quantify precisely the net impact of the winter storms on these measures," the Labor Department said
More than half of the people who get state jobless benefits ultimately lose their eligibility, usually after 26 weeks, before finding a job.
The number of people who've been out of work for more than six months has surged during this recession to a record 6.3 million in January, accounting for 41% of the 14.8 million people officially classified as unemployed, according to monthly data previously released.
The number of people receiving extended federal benefits rose by 196,000 to 5.9 million, not seasonally adjusted, in the week of Feb. 13.
The total number of people receiving benefits of any kind rose by 145,000 to 11.5 million, not seasonally adjusted, in the week of Feb. 13.
Last edited by NEPatriot; 03-05-2010 at 09:32 AM..
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