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Steven Senne/AP

The U.S. economy added 211,000 new jobs in April, while the unemployment rate fell to 4.4%, beating expectations of 190,000 jobs and a 4.6% unemployment rate.

Steady as she goes: The labor market has been remarkably consistent, averaging 200,000 new jobs per month for the past five years. That's more than enough job growth to consistently lower the unemployment rate, which has fallen from 8.2% in April of 2012 to 4.4% today.

Where's the wage growth? If you had told an economist five years ago that we would have experienced this type of steady job growth, he would have bet the farm that this dynamic would cause wages to rise faster than the 2.5% annual growth we're seeing today. The lack of fast wage growth takes pressure off the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates at a faster pace.

Wages grew 0.27% in April, and are up only 2.5% over the year. Despite 4.4% unemployment, we're still not seeing inflationary pressure. — Justin Wolfers (@JustinWolfers) May 5, 2017

Go deeper

Updated 41 mins ago - Health

Texas to end all coronavirus restrictions

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott speaking at the White House in December 2020. Photo: Al Drago/Bloomberg via Getty Images

Texas will end its coronavirus restrictions next week with an upcoming executive order, Gov. Greg Abbot (R) announced Tuesday during a press conference in Lubbock.

Why it matters: After Abbott signs the new order, which rescinds previous orders, all businesses can open to 100% capacity and the statewide mask mandate will be over, though large parts of the state will remain under mask local ordinances.

Senate confirms Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo as commerce secretary

Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo (D). Photo: David L. Ryan/The Boston Globe via Getty Images

The Senate voted 84-15 on Tuesday to confirm Rhode Island Gov. Gina Raimondo to lead the Commerce Department.

Why it matters: The agency promotes U.S. industry, oversees the Census Bureau, plays a key role in the government's study of climate change through the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and evaluates emerging technology through the National Institute of Standards and Technology.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

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