The U.S. economy added 243,000 jobs in January and the unemployment rate has fallen to 8.3 percent, according to the latest jobs report from the Labor Department. The numbers mark the fifth straight month that unemployment has dropped.
Analyst expectations ranged from high 100,000s to low 200,000s, so the numbers exceed expectations.
White House Council of Economic Advisers Chairman Alan Krueger said the January jobs report provides further evidence that "the economy is continuing to heal from the worst economic downturn since the Great Depression."
Mark Zandi, chief economist at Moody's, told MSNBC's Chuck Todd that the report is "unambiguously positive." Hourly earnings are increasing and it shows the economy is "definitively gaining traction," he said.
The unemployment rate for adult men and also adult women is 7.7 percent, according to the report. For blacks, it is 13.6 percent. For Hispanics, it is 10.5 percent. And for teenagers, it is 23.2 percent.