US job gains eased less than anticipated in February, according to government data released on Friday, while the unemployment rate and earnings ticked up.
The world's biggest economy added 311,000 jobs last month as the jobless rate went up slightly to 3.6 percent, said the country's Labor Department.
Economists polled by Reuters had forecast job growth of 205,000. They say the economy needs to create 100,000 jobs per month to keep up with growth in the working-age population.
Estimates for February payrolls ranged from as low as 78,000 to as high as 325,000 jobs.
The larger-than-expected increase in payrolls suggested that January's surge in hiring was not a fluke. (AFP/Reuters)