- The Federal Reserve Bank could consider accelerating the reduction of its $120 billion monthly asset purchases at its upcoming December meeting
- The U.S. added 210,000 Jobs in November, the lowest monthly total this year
- The ISM Manufacturing Index was at reported 61.1 in November, while the ISM Service Index was 69.1
Top Three Market Headlines
Federal Reserve Support Could End Sooner: Federal Reserve Bank Chairman Jerome Powell said last week that the central bank could consider accelerating the planned reduction of its monthly asset purchases as a result of lingering inflation concerns. The Chairman noted that the Central Bank had underestimated the supply-chain disruptions that have roiled the economy this year and contributed to higher inflation rates. While noting that he still expects inflation to decline next year, Mr. Powell suggested the Fed would be "retiring" its use of the term "transitory" to describe the nature of the current inflationary pressures.
U.S Job Growth Sputters in November: The U.S. Department of Labor announced last Friday that U.S. employers added only 210,000 jobs in November, the lowest monthly total so far this year. Increased employment in transportation and warehousing along with professional and business services drove November's hiring, while losses in retail sector jobs negatively influenced the monthly reading. Notwithstanding the limited number of job additions, labor force conditions continued to tighten, as the unemployment rate fell to a post-pandemic low of 4.2% and average hourly earnings rose at a pace of almost 5% over last year.
Business Surveys Highlight Continued Economic Expansion: U.S. economic activity continued to expand at a healthy clip in November, according to monthly surveys of business executives conducted by The Institute for Supply Management (ISM). The ISM Manufacturing Index rose to 61.1 in November, up modestly from 60.8 in October, while the ISM Services Index rose to a 24-year high of 69.1. (A reading above 50 indicates an expansion of activity, while a sub-50 mark reflects contraction.) Manufacturing sector respondents attributed growth to further positive outlook for new orders and expanding factory capacity, while Service sector respondents recognized increased growth from amplified consumer savings and rising wages.