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March Statistics Send Mixed Messages on Economy

Unemployment held steady at 9.7 percent in March, 162,000 jobs were added. But in the same month, U.S. bankruptcy filings reached their highest since 2005, with 158,141 America consumers and businesses filing for bankruptcy.

March unemployment statistics are out today from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the unemployment rate appears to have held steady at 9.7 percent. That's what it's been for all of 2010, so far.

On the whole, 162,000 jobs were added in March. McClatchy reports that this is the "strongest job growth since the nation entered recession in 2007 and the strongest confirmation yet that the U.S. economy is on the mend."

But take this job creation statistic with another statistic.

In the same month, U.S. bankruptcy filings reached their highest since 2005, with 158,141 American consumers and businesses filing for bankruptcy. That's a 35 percent increase from February, and a 20 percent increase from March 2009. According to Reuters, the new bankruptcy figure reflects "the unevenness of the economy's stabilization after the deepest recession since the 1930s."

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