Where Americans found jobs in March

Staff Writer
Columbus CEO

WASHINGTON (AP) — Retail, construction and health care went on a hiring spree last month. The three sectors combined accounted for almost two-thirds of total U.S. job gains in March.

Retailers added about 48,000 jobs, thanks to openings at general merchandise stores, health and personal care outlets and auto dealerships.

Hiring at construction companies was also strong, expanding by 37,000 jobs. The jump was fueled by home construction companies and firms involved in heavy and civil engineering projects.

Health care continued to add jobs at a solid pace, with new jobs at doctor's offices, hospitals and home health care services.

Among the sectors that shed jobs were manufacturing and mining. Manufacturing has been hit by slower growth overseas, lost 29,000 jobs in March. Mining, which includes the oil and gas drilling sector, lost more than 12,000 jobs. Low oil prices have cost that industry 185,000 jobs since September 2014.

Overall, U.S. employers added 215,000 jobs in March, extending their long stretch of steady hiring. The unemployment rate edged up to 5.0 percent from 4.9 percent.