Unemployment in the US has fallen from 8.1% a year ago to 7.3%.

The US economy added 175,000 new jobs in February, but the unemployment rate rose slightly to 6.7%. The jobs figures, from the US Labor Department, were better than many had been expecting and marked a rebound from two weak months. It had been thought the figures would be affected by recent harsh weather, which had hit much of the country. But the unemployment rate, based on different statistics, went up slightly from January’s 6.6% to 6.7%. ‘Underlying strength’ February’s jobs figure, known as non-farm payrolls and based on a survey of employers, compares with the 129,000 new jobs created in January. Analysts had been expecting a rise of about 150,000 last month. “It is stronger than expected on several fronts,” said Camilla Sutton, from Scotia Capital. “That these numbers came even while weather was bad shows the underlying strength of the US economy.”