The new jobs report is out with the good news that the U.S. economy added 266,000 jobs in November. This beats the forecast of 187,000 for November.
Labor force participation is up, according to the New York Times, with women leading the way:
The labor force participation rate inched up through most of the spring and fall, driven in part by an increase in women 25 to 34 getting jobs or starting to look for work. Over the last year, nearly 1.7 million people joined the ranks of workers.
Indeed, many who were formerly on the sidelines now have the opportunity to work:
The buffet of available job postings has drawn many Americans back to work. Employers have widened their scope, recruiting people with disabilities or criminal records. Older baby boomers are working past retirement age and stay-at-home parents are switching to paid employment.
The Wall Street Journal sums up the report:
Employers added 266,000 jobs in November and unemployment matched a 50-year low of 3.5%, signs the U.S. economy is withstanding a global slowdown.
Wages advanced 3.1% from a year earlier, an improvement from the prior month’s pace.
U.S. employers have picked up the pace of hiring. Jobs have grown an average 205,000 per month in the three months through November. That compares with average monthly job growth of 223,000 in 2018.
Hiring was strong in health care, restaurants and transportation jobs. In November, manufacturers added 54,000 jobs, 41,000 of which were in auto manufacturing. General Motors workers, who were on strike in October, helped drive the bounce back.
A number of news outlets have emphasized the returning strikers, as if trying to dampen the good news. But even without the returning strikers the report would have beaten the forecast of 187,000 for November.