In December, the unemployment rate fell significantly to 9.0% from 9.4%. However, this was almost entirely due to over 500,000 workers leaving the labor force, not due to new job growth. The labor force participation rate slid to 64.2%, the lowest rate of the cycle thus far. Weather was likely also a major driver here, as many workers stayed home. It is probably the case that the unemployment rate will bounce back up over the next couple of months, once this temporary disruption passes.
|Payroll Change (000s)||36||121||93||171||-29||-59|
|Labor Force Particip. R.||64.2||64.3||64.5||64.5||64.7||64.7|