Despite the havoc wreaked by Superstorm Sandy, the United States economy is now back on its feet. The economy added 146,000 jobs in November, and the unemployment rate fell to a four-year-low of 7.7 percent, a new jobs report released today says.
However, the report still paints a "mixed picture" of the economy, the Associated Press reported. While hiring remained steady during the storm, the government said that employers added 49,000 fewer jobs in October and September than it had originally estimated. In addition, the unemployment rate mostly fell to a four-year-low in November simply because more people stopped looking for work. Yay for getting people to give up on their job search?
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In the first week of November, 451,000 people had made claims for unemployment insurance benefits, MoneyWatch reported. That marked a dramatic uptick from the 372,000 filed in previous weeks. But last week, the claims dropped back to 370,000.
The figures defied expectations that Superstorm Sandy would badly hurt the economy. "The labor market is not getting worse, but is also not getting much better as it is unchanged relative to the recent trend," Jacob Oubina, a senior US economist at RBC Capital Markets, told Reuters.