December employment

More indications this morning that the economy is getting better. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the economy gained 252,000 jobs in December with the unemployment rate dropping to 5.6%. This was slightly better than economists had forecast. Importantly, both the manufacturing and professional & business services sectors hired more workers. These are key areas for future economic growth.
The number of involuntary underemployed (part time for economic reasons) continued to decline in December. The decline was due completely to a drop in those part time because of slack work. The number of those who could only find part time work remained the same as last month. But as the chart below shows, the level of involuntary underemployment remains well above pre-Great Recession levels.
Involuntary underemployed Dec 2014.png

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