It's MORNING EDITION from NPR News. Good morning. I'm Steve Inskeep.
Let's talk about the surprisingly weak jobs report that came out from the Labor Department today. The numbers for March show just 120,000 new jobs were added to U.S. payrolls. That's considered a disappointment, even though the unemployment rate did decline slightly, to 8.2 percent.
NPR's John Ydstie is here to talk with us about what all this means. Hi, John.
The nation's unemployment rate edged down to 8.2 percent in March from 8.3 percent in February, but only 120,000 jobs were added to private and public payrolls the Bureau of Labor Statistics said this morning in a report that was less positive about the labor market's health than economists had expected.
Prior to the news, forecasters had predicted BLS would say about 200,000 jobs were added to payrolls last month.
Close your books, America. It's time for a pop quiz.
Do you believe Barack Obama is:
a) The best of presidents? A blogger who goes by the name Troubadour on Daily Kos, Brian Altmeyer, pretty much makes the claim in a recent post: "Barack Obama is either the best President we've ever had, or more humbly, equal to the best Presidents we've ever had (and thereby one of their number)."
The morning's major news, if all goes as planned, will be the 8:30 a.m. ET release of the March jobs and unemployment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
According to Reuters, economists expect we'll hear that the unemployment rate stayed at 8.3 percent and that private and public employers added about 200,000 jobs to their payrolls. The jobless rate's recent peak was 10 percent, in October 2009.
A Swedish man got tired of drivers speeding through his neighborhood. Henrik Ismarker sent a Twitter message to the Stockholm police asking them to step up enforcement. The next day, according to a local news organization, police were on duty. A cop pulled over a speeding car, and the driver turned out to be the very same guy who had complained.