The US labor market has continued to add jobs in recent months, although at a rather tepid rate. This has cut the unemployment rate to 9 per cent after being stuck at 9.1 per cent for the previous three months.
On Friday the latest non-farm payrolls data are expected to show an increase of between 100,000 and 125,000 jobs in November, thanks to hiring in the healthcare, food services and retail sectors. This is one of the most volatile times of the year in terms of labour statistics, however, as companies hire temporary staff to deal with extra seasonal trade.
“US data continue to look far better than in the eurozone, but unless the eurozone debt crisis is resolved quickly, this relatively healthy position will not last for long. For now, though, the economy is growing respectably and is creating jobs,” says James Knightley, senior economist at ING.