Update on December Jobs Report - January 9, 2019
Santa’s Late Christmas Gift – A Blowout December Jobs Report
The US BLS reported that nonfarm payrolls jumped 312,000 in December, the best reading since February.
October and November were revised up by 58,000.
Probably not. Nonfarm payrolls have exceeded 300,000 five times since 2015, including the latest.
In each instance, payrolls slowed in the following month by an average of 135,000. Still, such a slowdown in January would represent a respectable number.
Forward-looking surveys of manufacturing are signaling a slowdown in activity, which could dampen hiring among goods producers.
While the economic data have been mixed lately, the surge in hiring helped quiet talk that a recession might be brewing.
Strong hiring suggests the business outlook remains generally favorable.
Growth averaged 220,000 per month in 2018, the best year since 2015.
Historically, job growth has slowed, not accelerated, in front of a recession.
We may see a moderation in hiring in the coming months, but December’s report suggests economic growth isn’t about to stall.