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The U.S. generated 288,000 jobs in April - the biggest increase in more than two years - and the unemployment rate fell to 6.3%, a strong performance that suggests the economy is accelerating after tepid first-quarter growth. The unemployment rate is the lowest since September 2008. Economists had expected an increase of 215,000 nonfarm jobs. Employment gains for March and February were also revised up by a combined 36,000, the Labor Department said Friday. The job growth in April was broad based. Professional jobs surged by 75,000 and retail, bars and restaurants and construction all posted big gains. Average hourly wages, meanwhile, were unchanged at $24.31 and the average workweek rose a tick to 34.5 hours, matching a post-recession high. The government said 203,000 new jobs were created in March, up from a preliminary 192,000, based on newly available data. February's gain was revised to 222,000 from 197,000. So far in 2014 the economy has gained an average of 214,000 jobs a month, well ahead of the 2013 pace of 194,000.