The Ottumwa Courier

AP National

February 7, 2014

US employers add 113K jobs; rate dips to 6.6 pct.

(Continued)

Also this week, automakers said sales slipped 3 percent in January. And last week, a measure of signed contracts to buy homes fell sharply, according to the National Association of Realtors.

On a more hopeful note, a survey of service sector companies, including retailers, banks and restaurants, found that they grew faster in January than in December.

Friday's report showed that some higher-paying industries added jobs in January. Factories created 21,000 new positions. Professional and technical services, which includes architects and engineers, added 20,000.

But health care employment was mostly unchanged for a second straight month, after adding 17,000 jobs a month last year. And retailers cut 12,900 jobs, the most in 18 months.

And government shed 29,000 jobs, mostly in education and the Postal Service.

Average hourly earnings rose 5 cents to $24.21, the report said. Average hourly pay has increased 1.9 percent in the past year, slightly ahead of the 1.5 percent inflation rate.

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AP Economics Writer Josh Boak contributed to this report.

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Follow Chris Rugaber on Twitter at http://Twitter.com/ChrisRugaber

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