The new report from Bureau of Labor Statistics shows the U.S. economy added 321,000 jobs in November. The overall unemployment rate stayed at 5.8 and remains at its lowest point in over six years.
Once again, public-sector layoffs did not drag down the overall employment figures. Though jobs reports over the last few years have shown monthly government job losses, in November, the private sector added 314,000 while the public sector added 7,000. The latter may not sound like much, but after several years in which that total was negative, it's at least somewhat heartening.
As for the revisions, all of the news was excellent: September's totals were revised up from 256,000 to 271,000, while October's figures were revised up, from 214,000 to 243,000. Combined, that's an additional 44,000 jobs.
All told, this is one of the best jobs report Americans have seen in many years. There were some spikes in early 2010, but those were largely the result of temporary Census hiring, while this new data points to genuine, robust job growth. It remains very difficult for President Obama's critics to explain these numbers: the hiring boom is underway after tax increases and full implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
All told, over the last 12 months, the U.S. economy has added over 2.73 million jobs overall and 2.66 million in the private sector. What's more, November was the 50th consecutive month of positive job growth -- the best stretch since 1939 -- and the 56th consecutive month in which we've seen private-sector job growth – the longest on record.
At this point, with the calendar year nearly over, 2014 will easily be the best year for U.S. job creation since 1999.
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.
Update: Here’s another chart, this one showing monthly job losses/gains in just the private sector since the start of the Great Recession.