December Jobs Soar by 292K, Smash Expectations But Average Wages Post First Drop Since 2014

Tyler Durden's picture

As we noted in the jobs preview, only a super strong number had any chance of prompting a market reaction, and sure enough, the just announced December print of +292,000 smashed expectations of +200K, surging from last month's upward revised 252K, while October was revised to a massive 307,000, a net addition of 50K over the last two months.


So time for another rate hike, right?

Not so fast: as usual, the fly in the ointment was a well-familiar one: wages simply did not grow, and with Wall Street expecting a 0.2% increase in average hourly wages, in December not only was there no wage growth, but in fact, average hourly earnings posted a tiny decline from $25.25 to $25.24.

From the report:

The number of unemployed persons, at 7.9 million, was essentially unchanged in December, and the unemployment rate was 5.0 percent for the third month in a row. Over the past 12 months, the unemployment rate and the number of unemployed persons were down by 0.6 percentage point and 800,000, respectively. (See table A-1.)

Among the major worker groups, the unemployment rate for blacks declined to 8.3 percent in December, while the rates for adult men (4.7 percent), adult women (4.4 percent), teenagers (16.1 percent), whites (4.5 percent), Asians (4.0 percent), and Hispanics (6.3 percent) showed little or no change. (See tables A-1, A-2, and A-3.)

The number of long-term unemployed (those jobless for 27 weeks or more) was essentially unchanged at 2.1 million in December and accounted for 26.3 percent of the unemployed. The number of long-term unemployed has shown little movement since June, but was down by 687,000 over the year. (See table A-12.)

The civilian labor force participation rate, at 62.6 percent, was little changed in December and has shown little movement in recent months. In December, the employment- population ratio, at 59.5 percent, changed little. (See table A-1.)

* * *

Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 292,000 in December. Employment rose in several industries, including professional and business services, construction, health care, and food services and drinking places. Mining employment continued to decline. In 2015, payroll employment growth totaled 2.7 million, compared with 3.1 million in 2014. (See table B-1.)

Employment in professional and business services increased by 73,000 in December, with temporary help services accounting for 34,000 of the gain. In 2015, professional and business services added 605,000 jobs, compared with a gain of 704,000 in 2014.

Construction showed strong job growth for the third consecutive month, gaining 45,000 jobs in December. Job gains occurred among specialty trade contractors (+29,000) and in construction of buildings (+10,000). Over the year, construction added 263,000 jobs, compared with a gain of 338,000 jobs in 2014.

In December, health care employment rose by 39,000, with most of the increase occurring in ambulatory health care services (+23,000) and hospitals (+12,000). Job growth in health care averaged 40,000 per month in 2015, compared with 26,000 per month in 2014.

Food services and drinking places added 37,000 jobs in December. In 2015, the industry added 357,000 jobs.

Employment in transportation and warehousing rose by 23,000 in December, with a gain of 15,000 in couriers and messengers.

Within the information industry, motion pictures and sound recording added 15,000 jobs in December, offsetting a decline of 13,000 in the prior month.

Employment in mining continued to decline in December (-8,000). After adding 41,000 jobs in 2014, mining lost 129,000 jobs in 2015, with most of the loss in support activities for mining.

Manufacturing employment changed little in December, though its nondurable goods  component added 14,000 jobs. In 2015, manufacturing employment was little changed (+30,000), following strong growth in 2014 (+215,000).

Employment in other major industries, including wholesale trade, retail trade, financial activities, and government, changed little over the month.

The average workweek for all employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 34.5 hours in December. The manufacturing workweek edged down by 0.1 hour to 40.6 hours, and factory overtime edged up by 0.1 hour to 3.3 hours. The average workweek for production and nonsupervisory employees on private nonfarm payrolls was unchanged at 33.7 hours. (See tables B-2 and B-7.)

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Shocker's picture

Same old stuff, different Month

Layoff / Business Closing List:

JRobby's picture


I guess they will start putting it in the air and water supply soon to insure "complete belief"

VinceFostersGhost's picture



Shortin the gold here boss.....cause that's just what you do.


Even if it's not real.


No real ounces of gold were harmed.....just some paper crap.

potemcam's picture

Considering that gold has done nothing but lose value over the past 5 years, and hasn't actually posted a gain over a period going back to 2009, shorting gold isn't exactly a big bet. In fact, making money by taking advantage of people who aren't smart enough to sell the gold they already have seems almost cruel. But yeah, betting against gold is almost as good as owning the Fed - it's like you have a license to print your own money.

bamawatson's picture

gold? man we have cnbc, we don't need no stinkin gold. look here cnbc tells me how to win the $700 million power ball

high quality journalism

mayhem_korner's picture



Incredible.  CNBC will stop at nothing to encourage people to part with their money and turn it over to the "system." 

I'm sorry, but there is nothing one can do to improve odds of winning the lottery, unless you have the ability to fix it. 

The lottery is a voluntary tax - skimming off the top of a transfer payment from millions to a few, anonymous beneficiaries.

Okienomics's picture

Betting against gold is like a license to print money?  Yeah, until it isn't.  The real strategy is shorting GLD and buying real stuff with the profit.  

Okienomics's picture

Oh, forgot to mention, until you lose it all in a tragic boating accident.

Luc X. Ifer's picture

The holiday season temp sales clerk and bartender jobs, are you kidding me, shall be an idiot the one who thinks these are middle class long term jobs?!

doctor10's picture

ennnngh1  Yeah right

Antifaschistische's picture

remember the good ole days....60's, 70's, 80's....when holiday hiring surge didn't SURPRISE anyone because it happened EVERY DAMN YEAR!

Quinvarius's picture

LOL!  This must be true.  And 13 year olds can buy guns for less than the cost of a book.  Despite the legal age to buy a gun at a store is 18 in the USA and libraries will loan you a book for free.

I AM SULLY's picture
I AM SULLY (not verified) Jan 8, 2016 8:41 AM

I had guessed 300K ...

(so I feel vindicated)

TeamDepends's picture

We're saved!!!!! (sobs uncontrollably)

DeadFred's picture

Yesterday the S&P dropped below its 1965 support and overnight futures twice tried and lost the attempt to regain that level. The job report this morning put it over the top but it couldn't hold. They are screwed, this is going to be a very bad hair day for TPTB.

Ms No's picture

That's the spirit! 

TeamDepends's picture

Similarly, right after the "jobs report" PMs were smacked below the crucial $14 & $1100 levels, only to regain them almost immediately. Prediction (yes we know this is crazy or is it bold as love?): If these levels hold through the close today, you will never see $13 paper silver or $1000 paper gold again.

new game's picture

critical support is lost. next stop aug lows. bust thru them a whooosh to fab retraces back to 11 then 9...

FreeShitter's picture

Notice the two unusually strong job report numbers right after the casino takes a shit twice now. Nah, it aint fucking rigged.

Rainman's picture

Time to revisit BLS fraud of yesteryear




mandalou's picture

Well, now the FED can raise rates again.

_ConanTheLibertarian_'s picture

Lovely how the FED is now painted into a corner.

stant's picture

Aren't there some new job openings in Hong Kong ?

I AM SULLY's picture
I AM SULLY (not verified) Jan 8, 2016 8:45 AM

So ...

Is "good news" good news now?

(I'm checking)

yogibear's picture

Hey, it's an election year.

Obama and his BLS figured it was time to grease the skids for Hillary.

NRGTDR's picture

Sell the news or buy the news?

general ripper's picture

This seems impossible! Most companies hire in Q1 or Q2 not the end of the year.

I think thier making this up as they go. When things get serious, you have to lie!

Eyeroller's picture

Temporary Christmas jobs at department stores and more demand for waitresses, bartenders and catering for all those Christmas office parties.

Winston Churchill's picture

Good full time,high paying jobs with bennies I'm sure.

_ConanTheLibertarian_'s picture

which should mean a major disappointment (layoffs) next month.

yogibear's picture

"I think thier making this up as they go. When things get serious, you have to lie!"

For sure. Companies hired for Christmas before December. After Christmas their let go.

Know many looking in technology. The last 3 weeks were kinda dead.

They realize Wall Street and the bots feed on these types of releases, so they'll do more.

I AM SULLY's picture
I AM SULLY (not verified) Jan 8, 2016 8:47 AM

If the FED can't monkey hammer this shit into the GREEN today, then they are in real trouble.

So - I bet the PPT goes all out. Low volume day, max 50M on DOW.

Expect it to end up GREEN by about 300 points.

(assuming that's what they want)

(because that's how "free" this market is)

Eyeroller's picture

The PPT has been going all out this week to keep this pig of a 'market' from rolling over.

silverer's picture

Once the markets are stabilized they can revise this report in about two months.

youngman's picture

I thought it might be a million...just to make sure the market went positivie...Its just like the construction numbers...pretty fake I think

JohnGaltsChild's picture

Yet another twisted report. It didn't take long to hammer gold and silver did it?

VinceFostersGhost's picture



It's kinda like the OJ crop gotta be right on it.


Now where the hell is Beeks?

Seasmoke's picture

This is great news for the 4800 being layoff @ Macy's. They should all be able to find 2 part time jobs @ Kmart and Sears. For a job increase of +4800 for February. Winning !

JohnGaltsChild's picture

3000 coal miners lost jobs in Ohio/West Virginia in December. Maybe they don't count.! 

ejmoosa's picture

No, it would be 9600 jobs!

Ms No's picture

Last I saw, ND had still only laid off 40 people so that should help. Apparently it only takes 1/5 of a man to keep a drilling rig running. 


db51's picture

Dear God....such fuckery.   Seriously people.   I think the desperation has reached a level of stupidity that you can't even comprehend.   The farm economy is in the shithole.   I farm 1,200 acres  in So Illinois.   Farmgate prices are at 11 year lows.....we're bleeding red ink.   Equipment dealers are in full panic mode with layoffs and soon consolidations as spending dries up due to cash flow   Farm Credit employee told me that farm balance sheets are starting to look ugly, and they haven't started marking down fantasy land values and equipment that is sitting on balance sheets.  We have several freinds in the trucking business.   Their trucks are ALL parked.  There is little freight moving, and what is they can't make enough money even with $ 1.78/diesel.    The big lie is unfolding right in front of our face and no one one admits it.   WTF.   

Real unemployment down here is probably close to 45%.....mostly Teachers, burger flippers, state and local govt workers, welfare fatties, and fake disability folks.   Unreal.

yogibear's picture

"The big lie is unfolding right in front of our face and no one one admits it."

As long as it's an "Official lie" it's a fact.

Reality hasn't mattered since 2009.

Just like Obamacare was touted as lowering cost. What happened? 


Secret Weapon's picture

Thanks for posting a real world, front line report.  I am in Houston and we are starting to see the same thing, just substitute petrolieum for farm.