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Instant View: U.S. job growth at 192,000 in March

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. employers maintained a solid pace of hiring for a second straight month in March, further evidence the economy was shifting into higher gear after being held back by a brutally cold winter.

GRAPHIC: http://link.reuters.com/ram54t

KEY POINTS:

* Nonfarm payrolls increase 192,000 in March

* Unemployment rate unchanged at 6.7 percent

* Average workweek rises to 34.5 hours

COMMENTS:

KATE WARNE, INVESTMENT STRATEGIST AT EDWARD JONES IN ST. LOUIS: "It may have missed by a few thousand but it was basically in line. The revisions from the past couple of months were higher. Overall people are taking this as a sign there isn't some sort of underlying weakness in the economy. Overall it has fit into people's belief that most of the weakness we saw earlier was due to the weather and not something really changing about the economy. More importantly, the trend over the last few months averages about 200,000, whereas with the weakness the last couple of months we have seen that lower trend. This is pretty much in line with what everyone had been expecting before we saw the impact of the weather."

ANTHONY VALERI, INVESTMENT STRATEGIST FOR LPL FINANCIAL IN SAN

DIEGO: "This is not the snapback the markets were looking for: a decent report but nothing spectacular. There's no sign of wage pressure. Given the weather disturbance, the markets wanted more than 200,000 in jobs growth. It's a Goldilocks report, not too warm and not too cold, and puts pressure on the next report in May to be good. It doesn't change the pace of tapering and shows the economy is still on track."

TOM PORCELLI, CHIEF US ECONOMIST, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, NEW YORK: "This is a pretty solid number. The initial market reaction seems to be one of disappointment, but the only way that you could be disappointed by this number is if you thought there would be some weather payback change in payrolls. We have highlighted that there was not going to be any weather payback, because weather really didn't have much of a significant impact on the change in payrolls. Where you did see some weather impact is on hours, hours have been chopped down over the past few months, but this month it all unwound. The wage pie (average earnings multiplied by hours) gives you a very good sense of what people are bringing home in the paycheck. This is a massive reversal in the declines that we've seen in the last few months in hours, and what that means is that the wage pie expanded in a very significant way."

PATRICK O'KEEFE, DIRECTOR OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH, J.H. COHN,

ROSELAND, NEW JERSEY "Came in about as expected, and the gains in private services were fairly broadly distributed. The large increase in temporary help is significant, but the key number is private employment. That's now back at a record level, recovering all the jobs lost in the recession. That's a noteworthy accomplishment."

TOM PORCELLI, CHIEF US ECONOMIST, RBC CAPITAL MARKETS, NEW YORK "This is a pretty solid number. The initial market reaction seems to be one of disappointment, but the only way that you could be disappointed by this number is if you thought there would be some weather payback change in payrolls. We have highlighted that there was not going to be any weather payback, because weather really didn't have much of a significant impact on the change in payrolls. Where you did see some weather impact is on hours, hours have been chopped down over the past few months, but this month it all unwound. The wage pie (average earnings multiplied by hours) gives you a very good sense of what people are bringing home in the paycheck. This is a massive reversal in the declines that we've seen in the last few months in hours, and what that means is that the wage pie expanded in a very significant way."

PETER TUZ, PRESIDENT, CHASE INVESTMENT COUNSEL, CHARLOTTESVILLE,

VIRGINIA "This is a nice number, one of those Goldilocks numbers that is decent but not so good that it gets fears going about interest rates or the economy growing too quickly. This suggests rates will stay moderate for an extended period and futures are reacting appropriately."

RICK MECKLER, PRESIDENT, LIBERTYVIEW CAPITAL MANAGEMENT, JERSEY

CITY, NEW JERSEY. "They're good. (Touch lower than consensus) You're quibbling over a pretty small differential. The concern would have been at the outliers, not the approximate consensus. It looks like the party goes on."

WAYNE KAUFMAN, CHIEF MARKET ANALYST, ROCKWELL SECURITIES IN NEW

YORK "It came in pretty much as expected, even though it is 8,000 jobs shy. After recent numbers, like claims and ISM, I think we were expecting something a little under, and this is pretty much that exactly. Overall it is in line with recent data, and it is very positive that last month's report was revised upward. The trend is definitely positive."

MARKET REACTION:

STOCKS: U.S. stock index futures volatile, add to gains BONDS: U.S. bond yields initially fall, then turn flat FOREX: Dollar trades flat against currency basket

(Americas Economics and Markets Desk; +1-646 223-6300) nL1N0MW0J1

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