The U.S. economy added 216,000 jobs in March according to the U.S. Dept. of Labor. The added jobs drop the unemployment rate to a two year low of 8.8%. Economists are moderately optimistic that this sign of labor market recovery is gathering speed. It is another indicator that the economy is on an upswing. Private employers drove the gains for the second straight month in a row. The projection is that private employers will continue to add jobs at this pace for the rest of the year. Virtually all sectors of the economy except construction, transportation and warehousing added jobs. Reports are that 1,000 construction jobs were eliminated last month. The Pacific Northwest construction activities, however, appear to be bucking the national trend in other areas of the country. See yesterday’s blog entry concerning new developments at the Joint Base Lewis-McChord.