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Economists revise up US job-growth estimates

February 15 2013

Estimated U.S. job growth for 2013 has been revised upward in the first-quarter Survey of Professional Forecasters released today by the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia.

Economists surveyed expect the U.S. to add an average of 165,300 jobs per month in the first quarter, up from their previous estimate of 127,400.

Economists also increased estimated job growth for the second, third and fourth quarter.

The U.S. is forecast to add 164,100 jobs per month on average for full-year 2013, up from an earlier estimate of 143,300.

The unemployment rate is estimated to trend down to an annual average of 7.7 percent in 2013, before falling to 7.2 percent in 2014, 6.7 percent in 2015, and 6.3 percent in 2016. These projections are below those of the last survey.

Forecasters also increased the estimate for growth in real gross domestic product to 2.1 percent in the first quarter from the previous estimate of 1.7 percent. That would also be a big increase from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis’ estimate of fourth-quarter GDP growth; the U.S. GDP contracted at an annual rate of 0.1 percent in Q4, according to the government’s advance estimate.

The Survey of Professional Forecasters includes estimates made by 46 economists.

Click on the chart below to enlarge.

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