U.S. companies report better-than-expected earnings, job growth today

U.K. companies reported better-to-than expected earnings and job growth in their latest quarterly earnings reports, boosting confidence in their continued economic recovery.

The U.N. Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCA) reported that U.Y.S.-based businesses increased sales, profits and employment by 7.3 percent and 6.4 percent respectively.

Sales and profit growth in Japan, the largest economy in the world, was 4.1 percent.

Businesses also added 1.4 million jobs, a slight rise from the prior quarter, while the unemployment rate fell to 7.5 percent from 7.9 percent.

That’s a slight drop from 7 percent last quarter.

The jobless rate was 6.5 per cent, a bit lower than the 7.7 percent rate reported in January.

The report also showed that the number of job openings was unchanged at 6.7 million.

The Reuters/Ipsos survey of economists surveyed by Bloomberg had a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.