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Retail, construction lead January US job gains

The Associated Press

U.S. employers added 157,000 jobs in January, and hiring was much stronger at the end of 2012 than previously thought, providing reassurance that the job market held steady even as economic growth stalled.

Retailers created 33,000 new jobs last month, according to the Labor Department's report Friday. That was the most of any sector and it follows a big surge in hiring during the fall. Growth in retail hiring is an encouraging sign that merchants expect consumer spending to remain strong, even as Americans pay more in Social Security taxes this year.

Construction firms added 28,000 jobs, second most among industries. And annual revisions showed last year's jump in homebuilding created more jobs than initially estimated: the construction industry has added 98,000 jobs from October through January, the best 4-month gain since April 2006.

Here's a look at the jobs added or lost in each major industry category:

Industry January December Past 12 months
Construction 28,000 30,000 102,000
Manufacturing 4,000 8,000 109,000
Retail 33,000 11,000 213,000
Transportation, warehousing -14,200 42,500 121,000
Information (Telecom, publishing) 9,000 -3,000 21,000
Financial services 6,000 9,000 107,000
Professional services (Accounting, temp work) 25,000 2,000 467,000
Education and health 25,000 50,000 429,000
Hotels, restaurants, entertainment 23,000 33,000 332,000
Government -9,000 -6,000 -74,000
Source: Labor Department