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marketsClosed Dec 3, 2021
Follow Live Updates on the November U.S. Jobs Report
  • U.S. adds 210,000 jobs in November, missing estimates by a wide margin
  • Unemployment rate falls to 4.2% versus estimates of 4.6%
  • Weak jobs report puts Fed in tough spot ahead of taper decision
  • Report suggests divergence between payroll and household surveys
Thanks for joining us. Here are five key takeaways from the November U.S. employment report:
  • The two surveys are sending mixed signals this month: On one hand, establishments reported a lot less hiring than expected in November. But on the other, households reported a lot more employment than expected. We’ll have to wait and see which proves more accurate as an indicator of the underlying trend in the coming months, but at this point, the 4.2% unemployment rate in the household survey is starting to get pretty close to the pre-pandemic level of 3.5%.
  • Wage growth continues to accelerate for production and nonsupervisory workers, both in the leisure and hospitality sector and in the rest of the economy. That’s a good sign for workers and should help fuel continued economic growth even as fiscal stimulus wanes.
  • Black and Hispanic Americans in particular reported very strong employment gains in November, outpacing their White counterparts. If those trends continue, it could propel the U.S. labor market toward the Fed’s “broad-based and inclusive” employment goal in 2022.
  • The Fed will probably be inclined to discount the weakness in the establishment survey and latch onto the strength in the household survey to support its plans to accelerate the winding-down of its bond-buying program when it meets week after next. Officials will probably point to the rapidly falling unemployment rate, still-strong wage growth and broad-based and inclusive gains to support their case for doing so.
  • Futures on the S&P 500 advanced to trade about 0.5% higher. Contracts on the tech-heavy Nasdaq 100 also gained, while the VIX, the market’s “fear index,” fell to around 26. Two-year note yields climbed to their highs of the session as the report did little to dissuade traders from anticipating the Fed will start raising interest rates next year to quell inflation.