News Wrap: U.S. economy gains 215,000 new jobs in March

In our news wrap Friday, the unemployment rate ticked up slightly in the month of March, as more Americans looked for work amid increased hiring. Also, the death toll from a collapsed highway overpass in Kolkata, India, rose to 24, as rescuers continued to sift through the wreckage.

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    Good evening. I'm Judy Woodruff.

    On the "NewsHour" tonight: Leaders from around the globe conclude a summit on keeping nuclear material out of the hands of terrorists.

    Two of the nation's largest states raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour.

    Then, ahead of next week's primary, a look at a new voter I.D. law, a "NewsHour" report from on the ground in Wisconsin.

    RICK ESENBERG, Wisconsin Institute for Law and Liberty: We don't think it's unreasonable to take some precautions to assume — to assure that people won't cheat.


    And it's Friday, analysis of the week's with Mark Shields and David Brooks.

    All that and more on tonight's "PBS NewsHour."



    In today's other news: The U.S. economy added 215,000 new jobs in March, thanks to gains in the construction, retail and health care industries. The increased hiring encouraged more Americans to look for work, and caused the unemployment rate to tick up slightly to 5 percent.

    The better-than-expected jobs report helped give stocks a boost on Wall Street today. The Dow Jones industrial average gained more than 107 points to close above 17792. The Nasdaq rose 44 points, and the S&P 500 added 13. For the week, both the Dow and the S&P 500 gained nearly 2 percent. The Nasdaq rose 3 percent.

    President Obama cautioned the international community today against becoming complacent in the face of a lingering threat of a nuclear attack. At the same time, the president hailed efforts to reduce stockpiles of highly enriched uranium, which could be used to build a nuclear weapon.

    We will take a closer look at the progress made at this week's nuclear summit right after this news summary.

    The death toll from a collapsed highway overpass in Eastern India has now risen to 24 people. It was under construction when it came crashing down yesterday in Kolkata just hours after concrete was poured. Rescuers continued to sift through the wreckage today, but said there is little hope of finding more survivors. Police have detained five construction company officials on possible culpable homicide charges.

    Back in this country, thousands of Chicago public school teachers went on strike today, shutting down the nation's third-largest school district. Educators and their supporters protested funding cuts and sluggish contract negotiations. Bargaining between school officials and the teachers union has gone on for more than a year without a final agreement.

  • JESSE SHARKEY, Vice President, Chicago Teachers Union:

    It is a shame that, in order to make our voices heard, we have had to close every school in the city. It is a shame, to make our voices heard, that we have had to go on strike, and yet, if that is what we have to do, that is what we will do.


    Almost 400,000 Chicago public school students were impacted by today's strike.

    And the storm system that sparked flooding and twisters along the Gulf Coast has headed east. The Carolinas were under a tornado watch for much of the day, and the National Weather Service confirmed one twister touched down near Allentown, Georgia. Heavy winds could be seen whipping across Central Georgia this morning, a day after at least four tornadoes hit Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama. No serious injuries were reported.

    Still to come on the "NewsHour": a world summit to ensure the security of nuclear material; two states raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour; the impact of voter I.D. laws in Wisconsin; and much more.

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