Key Economic Indicators – December 9, 2019

  • Total non-farm payroll employment increased 266 thousand in November, following an increase of 156 thousand in the previous month, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Private-sector payrolls increased by 254 thousand in November, while government employment increased by 12 thousand. In November, notable job gains occurred in health care and in professional and technical services. Employment also increased in manufacturing, reflecting the return of workers from a strike. Employment continued to trend up in leisure and hospitality, transportation and warehousing, and financial activities, while mining lost jobs.
  • The unemployment rate edged down to 3.5% in November, from 3.6% in October. The unemployment rate was 3.7% in November 2018.
  • The number of unemployed decreased by 44 thousand to 5.811 million. The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) decreased by 40 thousand to 1.224 million and accounted for 20.8% of the unemployed.
  • The labor force participation rate was little changed at 63.2% in November.
  • The average workweek of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 34.4 hours in November.
  • In November, average hourly earnings of all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 7 cents to $28.29. Over the past 12 months, average hourly earnings were up 3.1%.
  • The international trade deficit in goods and services decreased to $47.2 billion in October from $51.1 billion in September (revised), as exports decreased to $207.1 billion and imports decreased to $254.3 billion, according to the U.S. Census Bureau. Year-to-date, the goods and services deficit was $520.1 billion, an increase of $6.9 billion, from the same period in 2018.

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