December payrolls growth was quite weak, but that shouldn't remain the case as we get past the Omicron hurdle.
The unemployment rate fell to an astounding 3.9%, although the labor force participation rate did not improve. It held steady at 61.9%.
Average hourly earnings were up a stronger than expected 0.6%.
December nonfarm payrolls increased by 199,000 (Briefing.com consensus 440,000). The 3-month average for total nonfarm payrolls decreased to 365,000 from 425,000 in November. November nonfarm payrolls revised to 249,000 from 210,000. October nonfarm payrolls revised to 648,000 from 546,000.
December private sector payrolls increased by 211,000 (Briefing.com consensus 420,000). November private sector payrolls revised to 270,000 from 235,000. October private sector payrolls revised to 714,000 from 628,000.
December unemployment rate was 3.9% (Briefing.com consensus 4.1%), versus 4.2% in November. Persons unemployed for 27 weeks or more accounted for 31.7% of the unemployed versus 32.5% in November. The U6 unemployment rate, which accounts for unemployed and underemployed workers, was 7.3%, versus 7.7% in November.
December average hourly earnings increased 0.6% (Briefing.com consensus 0.4%) versus a 0.4% increase in November. Over the last 12 months, average hourly earnings have risen 4.7%, versus 5.1% for the 12 months ending in November.
The average workweek in December was 34.7 hours (Briefing.com consensus 34.8), versus a downwardly revised 34.7 hours (from 34.8 hours) in November. Manufacturing workweek decreased 0.1 hours to 40.3 hours. Factory overtime decreased 0.1 hours to 3.2 hours.
The labor force participation rate held steady at 61.9%.
The employment-population ratio increased to 59.5% from 59.3% in November.The key takeaway from the report is that it shows the Fed is close to meeting its objective of maximum employment and that wage growth in a tight labor market risks feeding into more persistent inflation pressures that will need to be addressed with a tighter policy position.
|Aggregate Hours Index||0.2%||0.3%||0.3%||0.9%||0.1%|
|Avg Hourly Earnings||0.6%||0.4%||0.6%||0.6%||0.4%|
|Civilian Unemp. Rate||3.9%||4.2%||4.6%||4.7%||5.2%|
|Civilian Labor Force||168K||516K||139K||-34K||130K|