U.S. adds 211k jobs, unemployment remains steady

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 211,000 in November, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.0%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Job gains occurred in construction, professional and technical services, and health care. Mining and information lost jobs. Household Survey Data In November, the unemployment rate held at 5.0%, and the number of unemployed persons, at 7.9 million, was essentially unchanged.

During the past 12 months, the unemployment rate and the number of unemployed persons are down by 0.8 percentage point and 1.1 million, respectively. Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rates for adult men (4.7%), adult women (4.6%), teenagers (15.7%), whites (4.3%), blacks (9.4%), Asians (3.9%), and Hispanics (6.4%) showed little or no change in November.

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was little changed at 2.1 million in November and has shown little movement since June. In November, these individuals accounted for 25.7 percent of the unemployed. 

The civilian labor force participation rate, at 62.5%, changed little in November. The employment-population ratio was unchanged at 59.3% and has shown little movement since October 2014. 

The number of persons employed part time for economic reasons (sometimes referred to as involuntary part-time workers) increased by 319,000 to 6.1 million in November, following declines in September and October. These individuals, who would have preferred full-time employment, were working part time because their hours had been cut back or because they were unable to find a full-time job. During the past 12 months, the number of persons employed part time for economic reasons is down by 765,000. 

In November, 1.7 million persons were marginally attached to the labor force, down by 392,000 from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) These individuals were not in the labor force, wanted and were available for work, and had looked for a job sometime in the prior 12 months. They were not counted as unemployed because they had not searched for work in the 4 weeks preceding the survey. 

Among the marginally attached, there were 594,000 discouraged workers in November, little changed from a year earlier. (The data are not seasonally adjusted.) Discouraged workers are persons not currently looking for work because they believe no jobs are available for them. The remaining 1.1 million persons marginally attached to the labor force in November had not searched for work for reasons such as school attendance or family responsibilities. 

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