The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported Friday the U.S. economy created 155,000 jobs in November and the unemployment rate held at 3.7%.
The consensus forecast was looking for 190,000 jobs, closer to the ADP National Employment Report released on Thursday.
The labor force participation rate, at 62.9%, and the employment population ratio, at 60.6%, were both unchanged in November.
In November, manufacturing added 27,000 jobs, with increases in chemicals (+6,000) and primary metals (+3,000). Manufacturing employment has grown by 288,000 over the year, mostly in durable goods industries.
Wages, or average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls, rose by 6 cents to $27.35, missing the forecast by 0.1%.
Over the year, average hourly earnings have increased by 81 cents, or 3.1%. While that was basically in line with the 3.2% consensus, as well, it does represent the continuation of growth after stagnation.
“Futures have rallied on this report because it supports the idea that the Fed might pause after one more rate hike,” Tim Anderson, analyst at TJM said. “It’s almost a Goldilocks report showing the rate of hiring slowing, but not enough for alarm, just caution.”
Employment gains for October were revised down by 13,000 from 250,000 to 237,000. The month of September was revised up from 118,000 to 119,000. Combined, employment gains in September and October were 12,000 less than previously reported.