Strong job growth points to COVID’s fading grip on economy

  • For sale and hiring signs are displayed at an Armani Exchange store, Friday, Jan. 21, 2022, in Miami Beach, Fla. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)

WASHINGTON — In a buoyant sign for the U.S. economy, businesses stepped up their hiring last month as omicron faded and more Americans ventured out to spend at restaurants, shops and hotels despite surging inflation.