We may be headed into winter, but today’s jobs report indicates the U.S. economy is heating up. On the heels of a relatively lackluster September, job growth in October surprised almost everyone — including economists — with nearly 100,000 more jobs than initially forecast and is thus far the best month for job growth in 2015.
As you may know, following each month’s BLS jobs report, we read dozens of news reports, scour the Web, and break what we find down to three key talking points you can use. Whether you’re taking a break at the office water cooler or conversing with peers in the industry, you’ll have three conversation starters in your pocket.
HERE’S THE NEWS YOU CAN USE FROM TODAY’S RELEASE:
1. Everyone was pleasantly surprised by October’s strong job growth. U.S. employers added 271,000 jobs in October, basically crushing initial expectations of 182,000. According to Business Insider:
The October jobs report was a blowout. Data out Friday morning showed that the US economy added 271,000 jobs in October. It was the strongest pace of employment growth this year, and nearly 100,000 jobs more than the consensus forecast for 182,000.
Headlines from leading news outlets — “Stellar October Jobs Report Blows Expectations Away,” “Jobs Report Crushes Expectations” — had similar sentiments, as did people’s reactions on Twitter.
Last month’s disappointment healthily offset by this month’s payrolls excitement. — Justin Wolfers (@JustinWolfers) November 6, 2015
What does this mean for the Federal Reserve and possible interest rate hikes? That remains to be seen.
2. More good news. The unemployment rate dropped slightly from 5.1 percent to an even 5 percent, which can be considered a milestone. According to The New York Times:
At 5 percent, the unemployment rate is very close to what would normally be considered the threshold for full employment by the Fed and many private economists.
Meanwhile, the combined total of August and September revisions takes the previously reported numbers up by 12,000.
3. We’re finally moving the needle on wages. Is it monumental growth? Absolutely not. But is it improvement and are we headed in the right direction? Certainly. According to Business Insider:
Wages grew at the fastest pace since mid-2009, as average hourly earnings rose 0.4% month-on-month, better than forecast.
Average hourly earnings surged 9 cents per hour, much faster than economists were expecting. Over the past year, average hourly earnings have risen 2.5%, keeping ahead of inflation.