February Jobs Report: U.S. Economy Adds 236,000 Jobs; Unemployment Rate Down To 7.7 Despite constant budget fights in Washington, the U.S. economy managed one of the best months for job gains in the past year in February, driving the unemployment rate to its lowest level in more than four years. U.S. employers added 236,000 jobs to non-farm payrolls in February, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday, up from 119,000 in January. That was the best payroll growth since 247,000 jobs last November and the second-best month for job growth of the past 12 months. The unemployment rate dropped to 7.7 percent from 7.9 percent in January, with 12 million people looking for work. That is the lowest unemployment rate since December 2008, when the rate was 7.3 percent.