Nation adds 159,000 jobs in January, unemployment rate inches higher

While this blog has previously discussed Congress’ new legislation affecting the business world through employee payroll and 401(k) administration, some experts believe that it could also be affecting the nation’s hiring rate.

The U.S. Department of Labor released January’s numbers on Friday, which showed that while 159,000 jobs were added last month, the unemployment rate still ticked up to 7.9 percent from 7.8 percent.

According to The New York Times, economists’ predictions were close to the final data, but the last few weeks have been especially gloomy when it came to the economy. The U.S. output shrank and consumer reports show that individual’s confidence has decreased when it comes to their finances and job prospects.

“The combination of eliminating the payroll-tax forgiveness along with continued stagnation in wages, I think, could be a real hit in terms of jobs,” Christine Owens, executive director at the National Employment Law Project, a labor advocacy and research group, told The Times. “If you add in sequestration [the across-the-board cuts to federal spending currently scheduled for March 1] that paints a pretty bleak picture.”

Specifically, healthcare and wholesale trade added new positions, while the government sector once again decreased the amount of jobs. The Times reported that the latter has been experiencing shrinking payrolls for the last four years.

It’s especially crucial for companies to remain diligent in keeping their payroll up-to-date. Investing in HR software solutions can ensure that a business never lags behind in the latest federal requirements. With HRIS software, human resource departments can spend less time on administrative duties and more time finding the right candidates for open positions.

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