WASHINGTON (AP) — A survey of economists finds that they believe this morning's employment report from the labor Department will be a good one.
Economists polled by FactSet say the economy likely gained 230,000 jobs in January, while the 5.6 percent jobless rate remains unchanged.
The predicted job gain would mark the 12th straight month above 200,000, the longest such stretch since 1994. And hiring has intensified recently: Job growth has averaged 264,000 a month in the past six months, up from an average of 194,000 during 2013.
But faster hiring has yet to lift Americans' wages much.
The Fed is closely monitoring wages and other job market data as it considers when to begin raising the short-term interest rate it controls from a record low near zero. Most economists think the central bank will start boosting rates as early as June.