After some weak job numbers in the late summer, many wondered whether the news would get better or worse in the fall. We now know it's the former, not the latter.
The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported this morning that the U.S. economy added 211,000 jobs in November, which is roughly in line with economists' projections. The overall unemployment rate remained at 5.0%, which is still the lowest it's been since February 2008, nearly eight years ago.
Perhaps the most encouraging aspect of today's report is the revisions: September's job totals were revised up, from 137,000 to 145,000, while October's totals were revised up, from 271,000 to 298,000. Combined, that's an additional 35,000 previously unreported jobs.
Overall, the U.S. has added 2.64 million jobs over the last 12 months -- 2.54 million in the private sector alone -- which is quite good, and 2.3 million jobs this calendar year, with another month still to come. November was the 62nd consecutive month of positive job growth -- the best stretch since 1939 -- and the 69th consecutive month in which we've seen private-sector job growth, which is the longest on record.
Above you'll find the chart I run every month, showing monthly job losses since the start of the Great Recession. The image makes a distinction – red columns point to monthly job totals under the Bush administration, while blue columns point to job totals under the Obama administration.