US job creation stronger in October

Washington – The US economy added a better-than-expected 204,000 jobs in October, according to the latest figures from the Labour Department. There had been fears that the 16-day shutdown of government services last month could have hit jobs growth.

Washington – The US economy added a better-than-expected 204,000 jobs in October, according to the latest figures from the Labour Department. There had been fears that the 16-day shutdown of government services last month could have hit jobs growth. 

The monthly non-farm payroll figure is taken as a key indicator of the health of the world’s biggest economy. However, the latest figures also showed that the unemployment rate edged up to 7.3 per cent from 7.2 per cent in September.

The Labor Department said that this was likely to be because many federal workers were counted as unemployed during the shutdown.

The report also said that employers added 60,000 more jobs in September and August than earlier estimates had suggested.

The latest figures add to a positive week for US economic data. The US economy grew at a better-than-expected annual pace of 2.8 per cent in the third quarter. Investors are watching closely the health of the US economy, with signs of growing strength likely to raise expectations that the US Federal Reserve will begin to scale back its massive economic stimulus programme.

Chris Williamson, the chief economist at the researchers Markit, said analysts were expecting a mere 125,000 rise in new jobs,” he said.

“The data will add to the view that the Federal Reserve is gearing towards a tapering of its asset purchases, but policymakers will most likely wait for clearer signs that the economy is capable of growing at a faster rate than seen in recent months, hoping to see a pace of economic growth that will eat into unemployment.”

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