November Jobs Report: 321,000 jobs added, unemployment rate at 5 - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

November Jobs Report: 321,000 jobs added, unemployment rate at 5.8%

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(NBC) Job creation surged in November, with the U.S. economy adding a dazzling 321,000 positions though the unemployment rate held steady at 5.8 percent, according to a government report.

Economists were expecting 230,000 new nonfarm payrolls jobs for November, with the unemployment rate holding steady at 5.8 percent. The reported number for October was revised higher to 243,000 jobs. September's number came up from 256,000 to 271,000.

Professional and business services led the way, with 86,000 new positions, according to numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retail also saw 50,000 new hires heading into the holiday shopping season.

"One word can describe today's report: Spectacular," said Todd Schoenberger, managing partner at LandColt Capital. "It's clear lower prices at the pump are attributing to the easy beat as consumers are enjoying the extra pocket change while increasing their discretionary budgets."

An alternative measure of job creation that includes discouraged workers and the underemployed edged lower, from 11.5 percent to 11.4 percent.

Despite the rosy overall numbers, the actual employment level was little changed, with just 4,000 more Americans at work for the month. The total unemployment level rose by 115,000.

Also, wage growth remained light, with average hourly earnings rising 9 cents to $24.66, a 2.1 percent gain.

Wage growth is watched closely by the Federal Reserve, which is tying its zero interest rate policy to employment growth and inflation pressures, which have remained muted and allowed the central bank to stay in ultra-easy mode.

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