US Unemployment Rate Fell to 6.7% in November as Labour Market Continues Weakening Trend

As was likely anticipated given the soaring number of Covid-19 cases and reintroduction of lockdown restrictions in some states, America’s labour market has not been recovering as steady as a $2.2 trillion stimulus bill would have liked to accomplish.

According to the latest Bureau of Labour Statistics data released on Friday, the US unemployment rate dropped by 0.2% in October to 6.7%, as only a modest 245,000 new jobs were added in November. The latest employment numbers weren’t even in the ballpark of the anticipated 470,000, and are a significant drop from the 610,000 that was revised for October. In fact, November’s employment numbers were the lowest monthly addition since the onset of the economic crash back in April.

Some of the more notable November job gains occurred in the transportation and warehousing sector, which saw job gains of 145,000 – bringing it just shy of 123,000 of pre-pandemic levels. Employment in professional and business services rose by 60,000, while jobs in the healthcare sector increased by 46,000, with the majority of gains occurring in offices of physicians.

On the other hand though, employment declined by 99,000 in the government sector, largely due to the reduction of 93,000 temporary workers that were previously hired for the 2020 Census. Retail trade also suffered a big hit in November, as many brick-and-mortar stores continued to be put under social distancing restrictions, resulting in the loss of 35,000 retail jobs.

Another grim outcome of the latest employment results show significant changes to the labour market and the overall economy. The number of Americans that were temporarily laid off dropped from 3.205 million to 2.764 million, suggesting that the people who did find jobs returned to their positions they were furloughed from earlier. In the meantime, the number of people in the long-term unemployment category increased by 385,000 to 3.9 million, implying that the US still has a long way to go before pre-pandemic levels can be achieved.

Information for this briefing was found via the BLS. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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