American unemployment rate drops to 8.6 percent

Posted Dec 2, 2011 by R. Francis Rubio
There is some good news for the U.S. economy this holiday season. According to the new numbers out, the jobless rate fell to 8.6 percent.
The U.S. Labor Department released its monthly report on jobs Friday and found that the U.S. economy added approximately 120,000 new jobs in November, a number which most economists had expected.
Labor also revised its previous numbers for September and October upward. Expected to hold steady at 9 percent, the drop comes partly in due to some leaving the labor force but for the most part attributed to the gradual improvement in the employment numbers over the last several months.
According to Reuters, the gains this month came entirely from the private sector, with the number of government jobs falling about 20,000 in November.
Private sector growth has picked up steadily in the past few months, with the increase in nonfarm payrolls in November to 140,000 and up 117,000 in October.
To keep the unemployment rate steady, most economist say the economy needs to create at least 125,000 jobs every month.
Construction jobs are still down, falling by 12,000 this month and around 15,000 jobs in October, although both health care and factory jobs are edging their way up.
Heath care jobs rose 18,700 in November, adding to the 30,300 in October and Factory jobs rose 2,000, with the majority of them in the auto industry.
To be expected, during the holiday season temporary jobs seen a rise as well. Temporary work increased last month to about 15,800 jobs and ticked up to 23,000 in November.
There are still 13.3 million people out of work, but, the new 8.6 number does brings the unemployment rate to its lowest level since March 2009.