Friday, December 03, 2010

So, Do You Want the Bad News First, or the Bad News?

Here's both:
U.S. Added 39,000 Jobs in November, Unemployment Rose to 9.8%

Employers added fewer jobs than forecast in November and the unemployment rate unexpectedly increased, vindicating the Federal Reserve’s decision to pump more money into the economy to spur growth.

Payrolls increased 39,000, less than the most pessimistic projection of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News, after a revised 172,000 increase the prior month, Labor Department figures showed today in Washington. The jobless rate rose to 9.8 percent, the highest since April, while hours worked and earnings stagnated.

More jobs are needed to sustain the holiday-season gains in consumer spending, the biggest part of the economy, into the new year. Payrolls aren’t growing fast enough to lower the jobless rate, one reason why Fed policy makers announced a new round of monetary stimulus.

“There is some uncertainty about the outlook,” John Herrmann, a senior fixed-income strategist at State Street Global Markets LLC in Boston, said before the report. Still, “as the recovery gains more traction and business managers become confident about hiring, we think that will ultimately lead to greater job retention.”

Private payrolls that exclude government agencies also gained less than forecast, rising by 50,000 in November. Economists projected a 160,000 gain, the survey showed.

The unemployment rate was forecast to hold at 9.6 percent, according to the median prediction of 83 economists surveyed by Bloomberg. Estimates ranged from 9.4 percent to 9.7 percent.

Manufacturers cut jobs for a fourth straight month, payrolls dropped at construction companies and government employment declined.

Economists’ Forecasts

Overall payrolls were forecast to climb by 150,000, according to the survey median, with estimates ranging from 75,000 to 200,000. The October figure was revised up from an initially reported gain of 151,000.

Manufacturing payrolls dropped by 13,000 in November, the most in three months. Economists had projected an increase of 5,000.

Employment at service-providers increased 54,000. The number of temporary workers rose 39,500. Construction companies subtracted 5,000 workers and retailers let go 28,100 workers.

Average hourly earnings were $22.75 in November from $22.74 in the prior month, today’s report showed.

Government payrolls decreased by 11,000. State and local governments reduced employment by 13,000, while the federal government added 2,000 jobs.

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