Money & The Economy

Private Job Growth Surges In December, Doubling Expectations

Private firms’ payrolls increased by 807,000 in December, more than doubling expectations as COVID-19 cases rise, according to a major employment report.

The 807,000 jobs added marks a significant increase from the 505,000 jobs added in November, according to the ADP National Employment Report. December’s figure far exceeds the Dow Jones estimate of 375,000, according to CNBC.

“December’s job market strengthened as the fallout from the Delta variant faded and Omicron’s impact had yet to be seen,” said Nela Richardson, chief economist at ADP, CNBC reported. “Job gains were broad-based, as goods producers added the strongest reading of the year, while service providers dominated growth.”

“December’s job growth brought the fourth quarter average to 625,000, surpassing the 514,000 average for the year. While job gains eclipsed 6 million in 2021, private sector payrolls are still nearly 4 million jobs short of pre-COVID-19 level,” Richardson said, Yahoo Finance reported.

Leisure and hospitality saw the largest spike in hiring, adding 246,000 new jobs, according to the report. Trade, transportation and utilities added 138,000 positions, and professional and business services increased by 130,000 while education and health services grew by 85,000.

Meanwhile, a record of 4.5 million Americans quit their jobs in November 2021 while job openings decreased to 10.6 million from October’s 11.1 million figure, the Bureau of Labor Statistics announced Tuesday.

December’s jobs report is scheduled for release on Jan. 7. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal estimate a gain of 405,000 jobs in December, with the unemployment rate dropping to 4.1% from November’s 4.2% figure.

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