Employers expanded payrolls by 223,000 jobs in December, according to the latest jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This figure is above analysts’ expectations of 200,000 jobs.
The latest jobs report also notes that employers added 28,000 fewer positions during October and November than previously reported.
Education and health services industry sees highest job growth in December
The BLS reports that employers in education and health services led the way in payroll expansion last month, adding 78,000 jobs. Meanwhile, the leisure and hospitality sector also saw a significant rise in employment in December, with employers adding 67,000 jobs.
The following industries also reported job gains last month:
- Construction: 28,000 jobs added
- Wholesale trade: 12,100 jobs added
- Retail trade: 9,000 jobs added
- Manufacturing: 8,000 jobs added
- Financial activities: 5,000 jobs added
- Transportation and warehousing: 4,700 jobs added
Unemployment falls to 3.5%
The national unemployment rate in December was 3.5%, dropping from 3.7% in November.
The unemployment rate for college-degreed workers was 1.9% last month, edging down slightly from 2.0% in November. These professionals are the most sought-after workers by employers.
Separate data from the BLS shows that 10.5 million jobs in the United States were sitting open at the end of November.
Stay current on the latest hiring trends: Demand for Skilled Talent
Check out the latest issue of Robert Half’s Demand for Skilled Talent report for details on in-demand positions for several industries including accounting and finance, technology, administrative, and marketing and creative. Learn about employers’ hiring challenges and retention strategies and explore local and remote hiring trends in the United States.
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Additional resources from the Robert Half Blog
- How to Work With a Recruiter to Land the Best Talent or Best Job in 2023: Working with a professional recruiter can give you a competitive edge — whether you’re an employer or a job candidate. Find out why in this post.
- 7 New Year’s Goals for the Job Seeker: Planning a job search in 2023? See this post for tips on how to find career opportunities that match your skills, experience and interests.
- How Seasonal Employees Can Help Your Workplace: When your business is facing a talent shortage, seasonal employees can provide vital support. In this post, learn how to find, hire and onboard these skilled workers quickly.