U.S. Labor Market Remains Strong

by: Roy Mehta

The Labor Department announced nonfarm payrolls increased by 94,000 last month, beating economists' expectations. Forecasters were anticipating an increase of 85,000. September and October payroll figures were revised down a total of 48,000. The unemployment rate was a less than expected 4.7%, the third month in a row it gave that reading. "Once again, as markets were anticipating the economy falling off a cliff -- it isn't," said Mickey Levy, chief economist at Bank of America. "I'm sure when the number printed, the Fed had a sigh of relief that it wasn't a disastrous number." The Fed is set to meet next week and most are expecting some type of cut. After the report was released, futures prices indicated a 26% probability the Fed will make a 50 basis point cut, down from 36% yesterday, and a 74% chance the Fed will cut only 25 basis points.

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