A report released by the Labor Department on Friday revealed that the U.S. economy added a disappointing 148,000 jobs in December, although the unemployment rate remained steady at 4.1 percent.
According to CNBC, economists surveyed by Reuters had projected nonfarm payrolls to grow by 190,000. The number of jobs added in December fell below the November total of 252,000, which was revised upward from 228,000, which was initially reported.
Contributing to December’s disappointing jobs numbers was an unexpected loss of 20,000 retail positions during the holiday season.
J.J. Kinahan, chief market strategist at T.D. Ameritrade said, “A little bit of a disappointment when you only get 2,000 jobs out of the government and get retail at the absolute busiest time of the year losing 20,000 jobs. It just goes to show the true struggle that traditional brick and mortar is having now. Outside of that I actually thought it was a good report.”
Preceding the report was a stronger-than-expected reading on private-sector employment where 250,000 jobs were added in December, well above the 190,000 jobs expected by economists polled by Reuters.
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