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Two US Employment Numbers to Consider

A couple of numbers in the U.S. employment report released Friday deserve a closer look, CNBC Senior Economics Reporter Steve Liesman said on “Fast Money.”

While the economy saw a net increase of 120,000 jobs and a dip in the unemployment rate to 8.6 percent, two numbers suggested something else might be at play.

“There’s the household employment report, which is rising at about 317,000 workers per month. Then you’ve got the payroll employment report, which is 143,000,” said Liesman. “There are some economists who say that bigger number, that household report, is the one to ride because it could be leading here, so that would mean bigger numbers down the road.”

But if the household employment report is a lagging indicator, it would not mean positive news in the jobs report.

Liesman also said that the payroll report is usually seen as the more reliable, less volatile figure.

Private hiring accounted for the net gain in jobs, offsetting 20,000 goverment jobs that were eliminated.

Trader Steve Grasso said he wasn’t buying the positive spin.

“We don’t believe the data,” he said, noting that no sitting president in U.S. history has been reelected with unemployment above 7 percent. “For us it just feels like we’re dressing up the window.”

Related Video: Santelli: Don't Believe Employment Numbers
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Trader disclosure: On Dec. 2, 2011, the following stocks and commodities mentioned or intended to be mentioned on CNBC’s "Fast Money" were owned by the "Fast Money" traders: Najarian is long AAPL; Najarian is long C; Najarian is long JPM calls; Najarian is long WFC calls; Najarian is long INTC; Najarian is long YHOO; Najarian is long PFE; Najarian is long TEVA; Brown is long VOD; Brown is long SBUX; Kinahan is long Cq long GS through options; Grasso owns AKS; Grasso owns AMR; Grasso owns ASTM; Grasso owns AVAV; Grasso owns BA; Grasso owns BAC; Grasso owns D; Grasso owns LIT; Grasso owns MHY; Grasso owns PFE; Grasso owns PRST; Grasso owns S; Grasso owns XLU;

Steve Grasso

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Colin Gillis

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