U.S. job growth came roaring back in October, according to The Wall Street Journal (subscription).
The numbers: The United States created 531,000 jobs in October—the strongest showing in three months. The unemployment rate fell to 4.6%.
What happened: “Employers desperate to hire to meet strong demand from consumers are rapidly raising wages, dangling bonuses and offering more flexible hours. And households are spending down a big pile of savings that had been boosted by federal stimulus money and extra unemployment benefits. ”
A changing labor force: It’s still unclear what the exact size of the labor force is. Millions of people lost their jobs in spring 2020, when the pandemic tore through a range of industries. Over the past few months, the pool of people who have jobs or are looking for work has expanded, but there are still questions about when or whether individuals who left the workforce—to care for children or because they were afraid of getting sick—will return.