Nonfarm payroll employment rose slightly last month but considerably lower than most analysts were projecting adding just 39,000 jobs, and the unemployment level increased to 9.8%. The Labor Department‘s Bureau of Labor Statistics said employment in most industries changed little during November although temporary workers and the health care sectors continue to see jobs gains while retailing shed another 28,0000 jobs during the month. Analysts surveyed by were expecting an increase of 150,000 jobs for the month. The consensus figure from an Econoday survey was 168,000 new jobs with a range of estimates between gains of 100,000 and 200,000. The number of unemployed Americans is now 15.1 million, according to the Labor Department. And the incremental rise in the unemployment rate comes after the rate held steady at 9.6% for three months. “November’s U.S. employment report is a painful reality check for those hoping that a meaningful acceleration in economic activity was underway,” according to Paul Dales, U.S. economist for Capital Economics. “The truth is that the economy is going nowhere at a time when companies are not willing to boost hiring.” The Labor Department revised nonfarm payroll figures for September to a loss of 24,000 jobs from a previously reported loss of 41,000. And the revised gain for October is 172,000, up from 151,000 new jobs reported earlier. Write to Jason Philyaw.

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