December job growth report booms; January’s report to include shutdown numbers

Local News

Despite one of the worst months for the US Stock Market in decades, the Labor Department says job growth was booming in December.

The blockbuster numbers surprised economists and pleased the markets and even the president, Donald Trump saying, “This really took people by surprise. This is a great number.”

The US economy created 312,000 jobs in December, rounding out 2.6 million jobs added in 2018.  

Unemployment, at 3.9%, a slight uptick over the last update, but the result of more Americans getting into the labor force.

The report, beating expectations, and tamping down recession fears amid recent market volatility. 

Mark Zandi, Chief Economist for Moody’s Analytics, says, “There is no recession around the corner. Growth is slowing, and that’ll become more obvious as we make our way through 2019, but I don’t think a recession is likely, and that’s the message in this report.”

The ongoing trade dispute with China has dragged on US and global markets and investors have been wary of the FED’s plan for more interest rake hikes. 

On Friday, Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell noting the strengths in the US economy like the jobs market said, the FED will remain flexible. “Markets are expressing concerns, again, about global growth in particular, and trade negotiations that are related to that. And I’ll just say, we’re listening carefully to that.”

380,000 furloughed government workers were not factored into the report, the numbers were collected before the partial government shutdown began.  A shutdown that continues could show up in the numbers released next month.

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