The US labor market’s recovery eased in January as the Omicron variant led to record-high infections and a new wave of economic downturn.
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Private payrolls dropped by 301,000 in the first month of 2022. That badly missed the median forecast of 207,000 added payrolls.
The report signals the hiring recovery taking a huge recovery in the first weeks of the New Year. Several factors are likely to slow down job growth.
Job losses were largest in the leisure and hospitality sector, with companies shedding 154,000 payrolls through the month. The trade, transportation, and utilities sector followed with a 62,000-payroll loss.
Only mining and professional and technical service firms increased jobs through the month, but still, those sectors added only 4,000 payrolls each.
Small businesses bore the burden of the decline. The group comprising of firms with less than 50 employees lost 144,000 jobs in January.