US Non-farm payroll employment registered an increase of 227,000 jobs for the month of January while the national unemployment rate edged up slightly to 4.8 per cent. Over the past three months, US job growth has averaged a solid 185,000 jobs per month.
Today's strong employment report suggests some underlying momentum in the economy and very little slack in the overall labour market. The US Federal Reserve opted to leave rates unchanged earlier this week, but is still on track to raise rates more than once this year. Expectation of further Fed tightening will put upward pressure on long-term interest rates in the US and Canada, which will likely contribute to higher Canadian mortgage rates in 2017.
Copyright British Columbia Real Estate Association. Reprinted with permission.