Friday, January 4, 2013

U.S. Payrolls Rose by 155,000 jobs in December

The latest employment data release from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) shows that U.S. employers added 155,000 jobs to their payrolls in December. Health care (+45,000), food services (+38,000), construction (+30,000), and manufacturing (+25,000) were among the industries with job growth over the month. Retail trade was boosted by holiday shopping between September and November (+143,000), although retail employment saw little change in December. A drop in clothing and accessories stores (-19,000) was countered by employment gains at auto dealers and food and beverage stores.

Other major industries saw little movement in December. Employment growth averaged 153,000 per month in 2012, nearly matching the average monthly gains in 2011.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate remained at 7.8 percent in December, having hovered around this level since September. At 12.2 million, the number of unemployed persons changed little over the month.

When broken down by reason for unemployment, the household survey showed growth in the number of job leavers (voluntarily quit) over the month (6%), as well as more labor market re-entrants (8%). The groups that lost their job or ended a temporary position, and those that were new entrants to the workforce, decreased slightly at 0.3 and 3.0 percent, respectively. The long-term unemployed (jobless for 27 weeks or more) made up more than one-third (39%) of the unemployed in December.

More details are available in the full BLS news release.

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