Announced this morning, the economy added 638,000 jobs in October, more than expected. The Leisure / Hospitality, Retail Trade, and Construction industries were strong, while Government jobs were weak partly due to the leaving census workers. The Unemployment Rate fell to 6.9%, from 7.9% the previous month, a larger drop than expected. Average Hourly Earnings increased 0.1% in October and grew 4.5% on an annual basis. Average Weekly Hours were 34.8 in October, the same as the adjusted figure from the previous month. Overall, a strong report highlighted by the lower unemployment rate as individuals came back to the labor force. It appears the Leisure / Hospitality and Retail industries hit hardest by the impact of COVID-19 are bringing workers back as the economy slowly reopens. The labor market continues to improve but is not yet back to pre-pandemic levels. Increasing cases, impacts to the reopening process, and therapeutics / vaccine progress will be key for the labor market in the months ahead. In all, bond yields are higher, and equity futures are improving off their lows as we head into the market open.
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