Employment

U.S. economy surprises with 266,000 new jobs in November

Data: Bureau of Labor Statistics; Chart: Axios Visuals

The U.S. economy added 266,000 jobs in November, above the 187,000 economists expected, the government said on Friday, as the unemployment rate fell back to a 50-year low of 3.5%.

Why it matters: The number reflects, in part, striking GM workers returning to work. The report, which also included upward revisions for prior months' job gains, also shows employers haven't pulled back on hiring, despite fears of a trade-war driven economic slowdown.

Private sector adds just 67,000 jobs in November

Private sector job growth slowed last month and added just 67,000 jobs — a big miss from the 150,000 that economists expected, according to the closely-watched report by ADP and Moody’s Analytics.

  • “The job market is losing its shine ... job openings are declining and if job growth slows any further unemployment will increase,” Mark Zandi, Moody’s chief economist, said in a release.

Why it matters: It stokes fears about the health of the labor that’s shown some signs of slowing, but has mostly held up in the face of recession fears. The ADP report is considered a precursor to the government’s official jobs release, which comes on Friday.