Friday, November 05, 2004

Employment has finally been jolted into gear out of several months stuck in neutral, as 377,000 new jobs have been added to the payrolls across the nation, from figures from the Department of Labor, which attributes the biggest "surge" in job growth since March in part "to repair widespread hurricane damage in the Southeast," according to The Washington Post (Nell Henderson, "October Job Growth Stronger Than Expected," 5 November 2004). However, it is reported that the "unemployment rate rose slightly, to 5.5 percent last month from 5.4 percent in September, because the number of people looking for work rose faster than the number of jobs."* The New York Times (Eduardo Porter, "Labor Market Snaps Out of Lull to Add 377,000 New Jobs") reports that "economists cautioned, ... that a one-month gain did not constitute a trend, since the economy has recorded encouraging spurts of job growth before that have just fizzled out in subsequent months." [The Labor Department's Bureau of Labor Statistics' report in question can be found here.]

*Emphasis added.

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