The final payroll number of 2019 surged past the estimate of 160,000 from economists surveyed by Refinitiv, who also saw the unemployment rate holding steady from December’s 3.5 percent.
It marks the 112th month of straight gains.
Unemployment ticked up slightly to 3.6 percent, as more people were looking for work, the Labor Department said Friday. The labor force participation rate edged up slightly to 63.4 percent. Average hourly earnings, meanwhile, rose by 7 cents over the past year to $28.44.