New hiring rose in March to its highest level in more than a year while job openings moved up slightly, fresh evidence the job market is slowly improving.
The Labor Department says employers hired 4.24 million people in March, up from 4 million the previous month. Job openings edged up by 47,000 to 2.69 million.
Still, new hires and job openings remain well below pre-recession levels, as many employers are still cautious about adding to payrolls.
The construction and retail industries reported the largest jumps in hiring, while manufacturing and government also reported gains. The increase in construction hiring is likely a rebound from February, when severe weather shut down many projects.