The US economy added a stronger-than-forecast 132,000 thousand jobs in November according to the latest government figures. The US Labor Department revised down the number of jobs created in October, but it said that in September substantially more jobs were created that it had reported previously.
The unemployment rate rose to 4.5% of the working population. In October it had been down at 4.4%, the lowest total in five and a half years. Average weekly hours worked were unchanged in November. All the hiring occurred in service industries, where 172,000 jobs were created. That includes retailers, banks and government agencies. US manufacturers shed 15,000 jobs last month. The manufacturing work week fell and overtime was also down.
The US economy is increasingly dependent on job growth and rising incomes in the face of a contraction in manufacturing and a slump in housing. The Federal Reserve, will meet next week to decide what to do with interest rates. In the third quarter the US economy expanded at the slowest rate this year but Fed officials believes that continued consumer spending will help the economy rebound.
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