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Finishing 2023 Strong

That's what the U.S. job market did in December, adding 216,000

The U.S. workforce added 216,000 jobs in the month of December to close out 2023, bringing surprise to analysts.

Here are some further details from the latest BLS report:

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 216,000 in December, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.7 percent, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment continued to trend up in government, health care, social assistance, and construction, while transportation and warehousing lost jobs.

In December, construction employment continued to trend up (+17,000). Employment in nonresidential building construction increased by 8,000. Construction added an average of 16,000 jobs per month in 2023, little different than the 2022 average monthly gain of 22,000. Employment in transportation and warehousing declined by 23,000 in December. Couriers and messengers lost 32,000 jobs, while air transportation added 4,000 jobs. Since reaching a peak in October 2022, employment in transportation and warehousing has decreased by 100,000. Employment showed little change over the month in other major industries, including mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction; manufacturing; wholesale trade; information; financial activities; and other services.

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