December Job Growth Surges Past Expectations
January 7, 2019
The last month of the year saw a massive increase in new jobs. Nonfarm payrolls increased by 312,000 in December, crushing estimates of 176,000 new jobs. This brings the year’s total jobs created to 2.6 million, well above the 2.2 million jobs created in 2017.
The month also saw the unemployment rate increase to 3.9 percent. The increase is actually a positive though, as 419,000 new workers entered the workforce. The labor force participation was up 0.2 percent from the month before.
Another bright spot was wage growth. Wages for December were up 0.4 percent from November, and up 3.6 percent year-over-year.