Job growth picked up in April, beating forecast

Dan Li |
Chief Financial Officer | Snagajob + PhD in Economics | Northwestern University

Employers added 253,000 jobs in April after slower growth in February and March. Adding to that good news, the unemployment rate and number of unemployed people stayed remarkably flat compared to March, and the number of job losses fell 307,000 month over month.

Wages continued to grow in April, with average hourly earnings rising $0.16 to $33.36. Average hourly earnings are up 4.4% over the past year.

On Snagajob, total jobs are up 3% month over month, with notable gains in the Construction (84%), Warehouse (79%), and Installation and Repair (76%) industries.

We’ve rounded up key insights from coverage of this month’s report:

  • Washington Post: “The remarkable strength of the pandemic recovery labor market, despite some softening, is buoying the U.S. economy through enormous uncertainty.”

  • Wall Street Journal: “A historically low  unemployment rate kept pressure on wages, which grew 4.4% in April from a year earlier.”

  • New York Times: “The higher-than-forecast job gain complicates the Federal Reserve’s potential shift toward a pause in interest rate increases.”

  • Forbes: “Analysts had been predicting 180,000 new jobs last month, a sign that the economy is healthier than expected despite persistent interest rate rises.”

Hourly Jobs

All industry data is from 3/2/20-4/30/2023

Here are the latest overall job numbers:

Overall hourly jobs are up 67% from February 2020's pre-pandemic numbers, and we are seeing a 3% month-over-month growth.

Here are the latest job numbers by industry and category:

Food & Restaurant jobs are up 3% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 2% month-over-month gain, and a 28% year-over-year decline.

Hotel & Hospitality jobs are down 43% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 1% month-over-month drop, and a 63% year-over-year decline.

Healthcare jobs are up 250% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 10% month-over-month increase, and a 67% year-over-year growth.

Retail jobs are down 32% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 5% month-over-month drop, and a 55% year-over-year decline.

Warehouse & Logistics jobs are up 692% compared to pre-pandemic norms, seeing a 79% growth month-over-month, and with a 4% year-over-year growth.

Shifts by Snagajob requested shifts are up 31% and completed shifts are up 21% month-over month. Shifts fill rates are showing a 39% year-over-year increase.