The US unemployment rate dropped to 4.6% in November, per the Bureau of Labor Statistics. While many had expected the rate to remain unchanged from October at 4.9%, we are now seeing the lowest level of unemployment since August 2007. Despite the strong jobs numbers, wages declined 0.1%, coming off a surge in October when they increased by 0.4%. Lagging wage growth is due in part to low inflation. While the drop is significant, some of this is due to 446,000 people who have dropped out of the labor force and a factor to the fall in the unemployment rate.

With unemployment remaining at or below 5% for nearly a year, an interest rate increase by the Federal Reserve is all but imminent on December 14. This would be the Fed’s only rate hike this year, but would be a sign that the economy is improving.

jobs-by-industrySource: Yahoo! Finance

Take a look at the table above to see jobs created by industry. Manufacturing has seen a continued streak of losing jobs in the last 3 months. This industry will be closely monitored, as much of President-elect Donald Trump’s campaign focused on job growth in the sector. His first step of this promise was evident on Monday when he negotiated with Carrier, a manufacturer of air conditioners, to save roughly 800 jobs in the US.

An investor cannot invest directly in an index. The opinions and forecasts expressed are those of the author, and may not actually come to pass. This information is subject to change at any time, based on market and other conditions and should not be construed as a recommendation of any specific security or investment plan. Past performance does not guarantee future results.

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