Chart of the Day: Net New Jobs in November

The American economy gained 266,000 jobs last month. We need 90,000 new jobs just to keep up with population growth, which means that net job growth clocked in at 176,000 jobs. This seems like a very robust number, but unfortunately most of it was a statistical artifact of a lot of people exiting the labor force. In real life, the number of employed was up modestly and the number of unemployed was down modestly. The employment-population ratio stayed the same as last month. The headline unemployment rate ticked down slightly to 3.5 percent.

Hourly wages for blue-collar workers were up a very healthy 3.7 percent. With inflation running at roughly 1.8 percent these days, that’s a real hourly wage increase of about 2.1 percent. That’s a great number, and it would be even better if we could sustain it for several months running.

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IT'S NOT THAT WE'RE SCREWED WITHOUT TRUMP:

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This is a big one for us. So, as we ask you to consider supporting our team's journalism, we thought we'd slow down and check in about where Mother Jones is and where we're going after the chaotic last several years. This comparatively slow moment is also an urgent one for Mother Jones: You can read more in "Slow News Is Good News," and if you're able to, please support our team's hard-hitting journalism and help us reach our big $350,000 goal with a donation today.

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