The U.S. Labor Department released its November job report today showing that the U.S. economy added 146,000 last month and the unemployment rate dropped from the previous rate of 7.9% to 7.7% which is the lowest unemployment has been since December 2008.
Unfortunately, the decline in the unemployment rate has more to do with the fact that 350,000 Americans stopped looking for work in November. Also, Friday’s report said that the job growth in September and October was less than originally reported — 49,000 fewer jobs were created in those months combined. Last month’s jobs report suggested that the economy had added 148,000 jobs in September and 171,000 jobs in October. That’s now been revised downward to 132,000 and 138,000, respectively.
Since July, the economy has added an average of 158,000 jobs a month, a decent increase from the 146,000 monthly average in the first six months of the year. Retailers added 53,000 jobs while temporary help companies added 18,000 and education and health care also gained 18,000.
Auto manufacturers added nearly 10,000 jobs. On the other hand, overall manufacturing jobs fell by 7,000. This was down because of the loss of 12,000 jobs in food manufacturing that is weighted by the layoff of workers at Hostess.
Still, overall manufacturing jobs fell 7,000. That was pushed down by a loss of 12,000 jobs in food manufacturing that likely reflects the layoff of workers at Hostess.
The U.S. grew at a solid 2.7 percent annual rate in the July-September quarter. But many economists say growth is slowing to a 1.5 percent rate in the October-December quarter, largely because of Hurricane Sandy and threat of the fiscal cliff. That’s not
enough growth to lower the unemployment rate. The recession is five years old this month, and the U.S. has only recovered half of the 8 million jobs lost during the recession. At the pace of growth of the past three months, it will take two and a half more years simply to get back to pre-recession employment. 12.07.2012