In January, total jobs were up 1.9 percent from the previous year, the best performance since 2015 and following an uptick to 1.8 percent last month. Through much of the last couple of years, job growth has bumped around at the 1.6 percent level.
While the increase is encouraging in general, the effect on real estate markets will be minor because many of the ‘extra' jobs are in the lowest-paid sector of the economy: hotels and restaurants. Either more Americans are taking their vacations within the US or they're getting more of their food from Starbucks and sandwich shops.
Jobs were up 2.1 percent in manufacturing, 2.6 percent in business services, 2.4 percent in healthcare, 1.5 percent in finance, and almost flat in retail and government. Unemployment rose slightly, to 4 percent.