Job creation surged in November, with the U.S. economy adding a dazzling 321,000 positions though the unemployment rate held steady at 5.8 percent, according to a government report.
Economists were expecting 230,000 new nonfarm payrolls jobs and unemployment at 5.8 percent. The reported number for October was revised higher to 243,000 jobs. September's number also was boosted, from 256,000 to 271,000.
Despite the big pickup in hiring, equity traders had little reaction, with futures indicating a modestly higher open on Wall Street, while bond yields rose.
The dramatic move was well above the average of 224,000 a month over the past year.
Professional and business services led the way, with 86,000 new positions, according to numbers from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Retail also saw 50,000 new hires heading into the holiday shopping season. Bars and restaurants added 27,000 positions, bringing the industry's total growth to 321,000 over the past year.
"One word can describe today's report: Spectacular," said Todd Schoenberger, managing partner at LandColt Capital. "It's clear lower prices at the pump are attributing to the easy beat as consumers are enjoying the extra pocket change while increasing their discretionary budgets."