The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported Wednesday that the average hourly wage rose 2.4% last year to $26.25.
That’s up from $26 an hour in 2016.
And the PMI, which measures how businesses are doing financially, rose 2% last month to 59.5 from 56.7.
The index has risen since January 2017.
But there are several reasons to be optimistic about this report.
First, there were signs that the economy is slowing down.
Inflation rose in March to 3.5% from 2.3% in February.
And wage growth has been below inflation for several years.
The PMI also is showing signs of weakness.
It fell 1.1% last week.
The report’s jobless claims are also expected to be lower than those in January.
But the unemployment rate is still higher than the U.K. and the U