The U.S. non-farm payroll presented a slightly higher than expected: 211K jobs were added in November. The ADP report estimated a gain of 217K jobs and the market expectations were at 201K for November. The growth in wages also rose to 2.3% — not as high as last month but still higher than in previous months. There were also upward revisions. The main sectors that expanded were in construction, professional and technical services, and health care, while mining and inflation lost jobs. The rate of unemployment remained flat at 5%. The U.S. dollar strengthened against the Euro and yen; gold and silver rallied.
The U6 unemployment measurement, a broader measure of unemployment, inched up to 9.9%. In terms of revisions, there was a total upward revision of 35K for October and September combined.
In November, the rate of U.S. unemployment was still 0.8 percent points below the rate recorded in November 2014.
The number of unemployed persons also (7.937 million) rose by 29K in November compared to the previous month. The civilian labor force grew by 273K. So there was a gain in number of people participating in the labor force and modest gain in the number of unemployed. Thus, the participation rate edged up at 62.5%.
Finally, wages grew in November compared to October – the hourly earnings reached $25.25 per hour — a bump of 4 cents or 0.2%; wages rose by an annual gain of 2.3%, year on year.
So where the labor market is heading?
The recent NFP reports showed strong growth in jobs, stable gain in wages and steady gain in , but little change in unemployment and participation – so basically when the labor market is reaching full employment, which may be lower this time around than it was in previous years, wages tend to pick up. And this is where we are now. For gold and silver, the rally may have been related to a speculative move that led to a rise in their prices.
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