Non-farm payrolls beat expectations. Quite handsomely. As Michelle Jamrisko of Bloomberg reports:
Employers boosted payrolls in April by the most in two years and the jobless rate plunged to 6.3 percent as companies grew confident the U.S. economy is emerging from a first-quarter slowdown.
The 288,000 gain in employment was the biggest since January 2012 and followed a revised 203,000 increase the prior month that was stronger than initially estimated, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. The median forecast in a Bloomberg survey of economists called for a 218,000 advance. Unemployment dropped from 6.7 percent to the lowest level since September 2008 as fewer people entered the labor force. Wages and hours worked were stagnant.