Seven months of job gains came to a halt in December, with the U.S. looking 140,000 jobs. Rising covid-19 infection rates resulted in new restrictions on businesses which, in turn, took its toll on the economy and jobs market.
The sectors hardest hit were the leisure and hospitality industries which saw a loss of 498,000 jobs. Retail businesses saw an increase of 121,000 jobs, while manufacturing and construction industries also posted increases. As a result of these gains, the overall employment was able to hold steady at 6.7%.
The question now is, how long with this decline continue? Will there be more restrictions on businesses in the months ahead that could result in further losses?
Though there is a $900 billion aide package, it’s unclear whether the money will be enough to sustain small businesses through what could be a prolonged downturn.
The markets took the news in stride, trading higher amid hopes for more stimulus measures from the Federal Reserve.
Hear my thoughts on the economy in the months ahead in today’s podcast. Please download and subscribe by clicking here: