Decembers nonfarm payroll number came in less than expectations this morning. As more people dropped the workforce and quit looking for jobs, be an appointment rate dropped to 6.7% from 7% of the month before. Analysts had expected that the US economy would add Close to 200,000 jobs for the month. Instead, it was announced that over 74,000 jobs were created in December. November’s number was revised upward slightly.
Also reflected in the graph above, the number of persons employed part time for economic reasons was unchanged for the month of December. I find this point distressing these people should be working full time. On the surface, the drop in the unemployment rate seems like a positive, but when you look at the number of people “underemployed,” you can see that recovery still a ways to go.
Recently appointed Fed chair, Janet Yellen, has a difficult job ahead of her as the Fed Board analyzes this economic data. The pressure is on for them to withdraw stimulus without discouraging growth in the economy.