US adds 155,000 jobs in December, but jobless rate rises to 7.8%

04 January 2013 15:00  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--The US added 155,000 jobs in December, the Department of Labor said on Friday, an improvement on November figures that still failed to prevent a slight uptick in the total unemployment rate to 7.8%.

Unemployment had fallen by 0.1% to 7.7% during the previous month, according to department figures.

The healthcare and food and drink sectors were the strongest driver of job creation, adding 45,000 and 38,000 new positions respectively during the month. Construction was also one of the fastest-expanding industries, providing 30,000 new jobs during the period.

The growth of the construction sector is good news for the chemicals industry, which counts the industry as one of its key end markets. Employment in the manufacturing sector – another important market for chemical producers – also grew by 25,000 that month.

The December jobs gain of 155,000 marks an improvement on the November figure of 146,000, and brings the total number of unemployed people in the country to 12.2 million.

The US economy needs to add 150,000 jobs each month just to accommodate new workers entering the employment market.

By: Tom Brown
+44 208 652 3214

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