U.S. employers added a robust 200,000 jobs in January, and wages rose at the fastest pace in more than eight years.

Businesses hired robustly in January, adding a better-than-expected 200,000 jobs, the Labor Department said Friday. The unemployment rate remained steady at 4.1 percent, the lowest level since 2000.
Earnings rose at the fastest rate in eight years. Average hourly earnings, which had been rising at a modest 2.5 percent for years, increased by 2.9 percent from the year before. 
The pay gains suggest employers are competing more fiercely for workers. Raises stemming from Republican tax cuts and minimum wage increases in 18 states also likely boosted pay.
Even with revisions, which brought the job growth for the two prior months down by 24,000, the report shows strong footing in an economy in its ninth year of expansion, fueled by global economic growth and healthy consumer spending at home.
The pickup in hourly wages, along with a recent uptick in inflation, may make it more likely that the Federal Reserve will raise short-term interest rates more quickly in the coming months.
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