Employers 203,000 Jobs in November; Unemployment Rate at 7%

November jobs report
Mike Groll/AP

WASHINGTON -- A fourth straight month of solid hiring cut the U.S. unemployment rate in November to a five-year low of 7 percent. The gains in the job market could spur greater economic growth.

The Labor Department said Friday that employers added 203,000 jobs, nearly matching October's revised gain of 200,000. The job gains helped lower the unemployment rate from 7.3 percent in October.

The strengthening job market is likely to fuel speculation that the Federal Reserve may scale back its bond purchases when it meets later this month.

The economy has now generated an average of 204,000 jobs from August through November. That's up from 159,000 a month from April through July.

Many of the November job gains were in higher-paying industries. Manufacturers added 27,000 positions, the most since March 2012. Construction firms gained 17,000. The two industries have created a combined 113,000 jobs in the past four months.

Another month of robust hiring follows other positive economic news. The economy expanded at an annual rate of 3.6 percent in the July-September quarter, the fastest growth since early 2012, the government said Wednesday.

Still, nearly half that gain came from businesses building their stockpiles. Consumer spending grew at the slowest pace since late 2009.

Greater hiring could support healthier spending. Job growth has a dominant influence over much of the economy. If hiring continues at the current pace, a virtuous cycle starts to build. More jobs usually lead to higher wages, more spending and faster growth.

But more higher-paying jobs are also necessary. Roughly half the jobs that were added in the six months through October were in four low-wage industries: retail; hotels, restaurants and entertainment; temp jobs; and home health care workers.

The Fed has pegged its stimulus efforts to the unemployment rate. Chairman Ben Bernanke has said the Fed will ease its monthly purchases of $85 billion in bonds once hiring has improved consistently. The bond purchases have kept long-term interest rates low.

The recent economic upturn has been surprising. Many economists expected the government shutdown in October to hobble growth. Yet the economy motored along without much interruption, according to several government and industry reports.

Early reports on holiday shopping have been disappointing. The National Retail Federation said sales during the Thanksgiving weekend -- probably the most important stretch for retailers -- fell for the first time since the group began keeping track in 2006.

Consumers are willing to spend on big-ticket items. Autos sold in November at their best pace in seven years, according to Autodata Corp. New-home sales in October bounced back from a summer downturn.

-AP Economics Writer Josh Boak contributed to this report.

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what part of this lie are we supposed to believe ?

December 06 2013 at 8:16 PM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

Question---if unemployment is at a 5 year low, why are the DEMS insisting extending the federal unemeployement benifits, for another year, as part of the budget deal??????

Something is not right here---somebody lies


December 06 2013 at 11:57 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Of course the unemployment rate was going to go down, They didn't extend unemployment benefits. I am sure they will use all of the part time temporary holiday help for their next bogus report. They have to, they are serving a political agenda. Our gov't is lawfully allowed to lied to the American people. Our US Supreme Court ruled that they can.

December 06 2013 at 11:52 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Liars figure, and figures lie......

December 06 2013 at 10:24 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply
1 reply to Gordon's comment

Which are you?

December 06 2013 at 11:32 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

Christmas jobs. They'll be unemployed agian in January. Also, this only counts those on unemployment. Many more are unemployed that the statistic shows.

December 06 2013 at 10:24 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Ted Brown

These are seasonal jobs and the rate will go up in January. This is a false number just like everything else about this administration.

December 06 2013 at 10:11 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

" Cue the denials " Wonderful article. We have over 90 million working age people without a job/ career/ profession/ business ( Whatever anyone would want to call OUT OF WORK ), but if anyone wants to believe this B.S. that " the economy motored along without much interruption, according to several government and industry reports. " then you can keep drinking the Kool-Aid and ask all the people around you how they are enjoying this " Robust economy "! I will say that for those who are not counting on going to a government building for their answers to monies for their lives and actually going out and getting work for themselves-They will be the ones who will prosper in these times, but for those who think all we need to do is " Tax the rich 1% " and " Redistribute the wealth ", they are in for a very rude awakening when daylight comes!

December 06 2013 at 9:21 AM Report abuse -1 rate up rate down Reply

Cue the denials.

December 06 2013 at 8:58 AM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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