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U.S., Manufacturing Jobs Increase

Manufacturing employment inched up in December, and overall employment rose more than expected, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics

What’s going on: The U.S. economy added 216,000 jobs last month, and the overall unemployment rate was unchanged from November, at 3.7%.

  • Manufacturing added just 6,000 workers in December, going to 12,986,000 employees on a seasonally adjusted basis from 12,980,000 in November.

Earnings: Average hourly earnings in manufacturing increased to a seasonally adjusted $27.16 in December from $26.91 in November. Wages in the sector have grown 5.8% over the past year.

  • Employees working in durable goods saw their average hourly pay increase to a seasonally adjusted $28.49 in December from $28.09 in November.
  • Those in nondurable goods saw a smaller rise, to $24.99 from $24.97.

The last word: “Overall, hiring was quite sluggish in 2023 among manufacturers, with the sector adding 12,000 workers on net, following robust gains in 2021 and 2022,” NAM Chief Economist Chad Moutray said.

  • “On the positive side, manufacturing employment has remained resilient, hovering near 13 million workers all year.”
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