U.S. adds 155000 jobs in November, unemployment steady at 3.7%

U.S. adds 155000 jobs in November, unemployment steady at 3.7%

U.S. adds 155000 jobs in November, unemployment steady at 3.7%

US employers added 155,000 jobs in November, down from a more robust 237,000 in October and the unemployment rate remained 3.7 percent, almost a five-decade low, for the third straight month. The African-American unemployment declined to 5.9 percent, matching May's figure as the lowest on record.

With the overall unemployment rate this low, several other economic indicators are finally showing that wages are rising as employers struggle to fill vacant positions.

The November jobs report is off the mark of the average of 209,000 jobs created per month over the prior 12 months, but the number of employed Americans once again reached an all-time high of 156,795,000, the 13th record-breaking month since President Donald Trump took office in January 2017. Conversely, in 25 metro areas - many located in Louisiana, North Dakota, Ohio, and West Virginia - employment has fallen by more than 1.1% in 2018.

Average hourly earnings rose six cents, or 0.2 percent in November.

Average hourly earnings rose 3.1 percent as compared with November 2017, matching the pace recorded in October, which had been the strongest increase in almost a decade. A net of 15,000 jobs were added in November, compared to 56,000 added in the previous month. Manufacturing companies hired 27,000 new workers, the most in seven months and a sign that trade tensions have yet to weaken factory hiring.

November's gains marked a slowdown from the roughly 200,000 jobs the United States economy has added on average each month over the past year.

The healthcare industry added 32,000 jobs last month, with most of those gains coming in ambulatory services.

The potential for a more anemic economy contributed to a sharp drop in the stock market Friday, sending the Dow Jones average down 560 points, or 2.2%, by market close.

This jobs report came at a tumultuous time for financial markets, as Wall Street investors tried to unravel whether the sell-off in stocks was symptomatic of economic malaise and amid concern the Federal Reserve was raising interest rates too quickly.

But an unusually cold November slowed hiring at construction sites, with payrolls increasing by only 5,000 jobs after surging 24,000 in October. The average workweek fell to 34.4 hours from 34.5 hours in October.

A broader measure of unemployment, which includes people who want to work but have given up searching and those working part-time because they can not find full-time employment, rose two-tenths of a percentage point to a five-month high of 7.6 percent. The economy developed at a 3.5 percent pace in the second from last quarter. The November jobs data "gives ... ammunition" to Fed officials advocating caution, Omair Sharif, senior USA economist at Societe Generale in New York, told The New York Times.

Retailers added 18,000 jobs in November.

"With home-price growth also slowing and mortgage rates easing a bit, sustained wage growth of better than 3 percent certainly helps affordability conditions as we head into 2019", Fratantoni said.

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