Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari applauded Friday’s January jobs data as "one of the first signs" of wage growth.
U.S. job growth surged in January and wages increased further, recording their largest annual gain in more than 8-1/2 years, bolstering expectations that inflation will push higher this year as the labor market hits full employment, Reuters reported.
Nonfarm payrolls jumped by 200,000 jobs last month after rising 160,000 in December, the Labor Department said on Friday.
The unemployment rate was unchanged at a 17-year low of 4.1 percent. Average hourly earnings rose nine cents, or 0.3 percent, in January to $26.74, building on December's solid 0.4 percent gain.
That boosted the year-on-year increase in average hourly earnings to 2.9 percent, the largest rise since June 2009, from 2.7 percent in December. Workers, however, put in fewer hours last month. The average workweek fell to 34.3 hours, the shortest in four months, from 34.5 hours in December.
"If wage growth continues that could have an effect on the path of interest rates," he told CNBC.
Higher rates tend to put pressure on the stock market because bond yields start to look more attractive, CNBC.com explained.
"That's good for the public as a whole. I think it's good for the economy overall. But I do think if wage growth continues that could have an effect on the path of interest rates," he said on "Squawk Box".
"The most important thing that I saw in a quick review of the jobs data is wage growth," Kashkari said.
"We've been waiting for wage growth. Everyone's been declaring we're at maximum employment. More Americans have been coming in, which is a really good thing. But there hasn't been much wage growth. This is one of the first signs that we're seeing wage growth finally starting to pick up," he said.
For his part, President Donald Trump took to Twitter to celebrate the jobs data.
"With 3.5 million Americans receiving bonuses or other benefits from their employers as a result of TAX CUTS, 2018 is off to great start!
Unemployment rate at 4.1%.
Average earnings up 2.9% in the last year.
200,000 new American jobs.
(Newsmax wire services contributed to this report).
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