US Nears Full Employment

Employment gains in the U.S. in November exceeded economist estimates.

Data from ADP Research Institute showed that employment had its largest growth in five months, with 217,000 jobs added, reported Bloomberg. The October figure was also revised, increasing by 14,000 to 196,000.

The source reported that with the gains, the U.S. jobless rate is currently at or very close to what policymakers consider full employment.

“Job growth remains strong and steady,” said Moody’s Analytics Inc. Chief Economist Mark Zandi in a statement. “The economy is fast approaching full employment and will be there no later than next summer.”

The majority of the job gains were at private-sector service providers. A total of 204,000 payrolls were added in the sector, driven by the addition of 59,000 jobs in professional and business services, Bloomberg reported.

Employment at manufacturers and other goods-producing industries grew by 13,000, with construction hiring 16,000 positions and jobs at factories increasing by 6,000.

Small companies added 81,000 employees, and medium-sized businesses took on 62,000 new workers. Some 74,000 employees were added by large companies with 500 or more workers.

MarketWatch reported that the healthy labor figures are likely to prompt the Fed to raise rates at its December meeting. That decision would mark the first time it raised rates in almost 10 years.

The figures come as the Labor Department prepares to release its official employment report for November. After major growth in October, when 271,000 jobs were added, economists expect that the report will show nonfarm payroll increased by 195,000 positions in November, according to MarketWatch.

The data “suggests solid November jobs growth,” Barclays economist Jess Hurwitz told MarketWatch.

The release date for the labor report is Dec. 4.