From our colleagues at our sister company, Argent Trust:
Announced this morning, the economy added 263,000 jobs in November, higher than expected. The Leisure and Hospitality industry was strong, while the Retail Trade industry was weak. The Unemployment Rate held steady at 3.7% and the Labor Force Participation Rate at 62.1% is one tenth lower than the previous month. Average Hourly Earnings increased 0.6% in November, double what was expected, and is 5.1% higher on an annual basis. Finally, Average Weekly Hours were 34.4, which is one tenth lower than the previous month.
Overall, the labor market remains resilient with more job additions than expected in November coupled with a low unemployment rate. Average hourly earnings increased at a faster pace in November than the previous month, noting continued upward pressure on wages. While the Federal Reserve is contemplating slowing down the pace of rate increases, the timing and amount of their actions will depend on wage increases moderating, which hasn’t happened yet. Meanwhile, inflation measures remain elevated even though they are beginning to decline. Amidst this process, whether the labor market remains resilient, without a large increase in the unemployment rate, will be a key factor for the strength of the economy in the months ahead.
Following the release of the jobs report, U.S. 10-year treasury yield ticks higher following the report and equity futures are lower as we head into the market open.
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