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US: Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 312K in December vs 177K expected

"Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 312,000 in December, and the unemployment rate rose to 3.9 percent," the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Friday.

Key takeaways from the press release

  • The unemployment rate rose by 0.2 percentage point to 3.9 percent in December, and the number of unemployed persons increased by 276,000 to 6.3 million. 
  • The labor force participation rate, at 63.1 percent, changed little in December, and the employment-population ratio was 60.6 percent for the third consecutive month.
  • The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls increased by 0.1 hour to 34.5 hours in December.
  • In December, average hourly earnings for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls rose 11 cents to $27.48.
    • Over the year, average hourly earnings have increased by 84 cents, or 3.2 percent.

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