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Monday, July 22, 2024
HomeNewsEconomyUnemployment Unchanged at 17-Year Low, Jobs Created Misses Forecast

Unemployment Unchanged at 17-Year Low, Jobs Created Misses Forecast

A "Now Hiring" sign hangs on the door to the Urban Outfitters store at Quincy Market in Boston, Massachusetts September 5, 2014. (Photo: Reuters)
A "Now Hiring" sign hangs on the door to the Urban Outfitters store at Quincy Market in Boston, Massachusetts September 5, 2014. (Photo: Reuters)

A “Now Hiring” sign hangs on the door to the Urban Outfitters store at Quincy Market in Boston, Massachusetts September 5, 2014. (Photo: Reuters)

The Labor Department via the Bureau of Labor Statistics said 148,000 jobs were created in December, missing the consensus 191,000 forecast, and unemployment remained unchanged at the 17-year low at 4.1%.

The labor force participation rate came in at 62.7%, largely unchanged over both the month and over the year. However, the less-cited but arguably more important employment-population ratio was unchanged at 60.1% in December, but was up by 0.3 percentage point over the year.

The silver lining in the report is the quality of jobs created.

Construction added 30,000 job, with most of the increase among specialty trade contractors (+24,000). In 2017, construction employment increased by 210,000, compared with 155,000 in 2016. Manufacturing employment rose by 25,000, largely reflecting a gain in durable goods industries (+21,000). Manufacturing added 196,000 jobs in 2017, following a net -16,000 loss in 2016.

In December, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 9 cents to $26.63. On a yearly basis, average hourly earnings have risen by 65 cents, or 2.5%. Average hourly earnings of private-sector production and nonsupervisory employees increased by 7 cents to $22.30 in December.

The report follows the ADP National Employment Report, which gauges payrolls in the private sector. It found the U.S. private sector added 250,000 jobs in the month of December.

Written by

PPD Business, the economy-reporting arm of People's Pundit Daily, is "making sense of current events." We are a no-holds barred, news reporting pundit of, by, and for the people.

Latest comment

  • After revisions, job gains have averaged
    204,000 over the last 3 months.

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