Unemployment Rate Slightly Up for Nation, Blacks
Despite fiscal cliff fears, employers still added 155,000 jobs to the economy last month
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics on Friday said the national unemployment rate was mostly unchanged at 7.8 percent in December, although slightly up from the 7.7 percent reported in November. The unemployment rate for blacks rose to 14 percent, up from 13.2 percent in November. The rate for Hispanics (9.2 percent) and whites (6.9 percent) remained unchanged for a second straight month. Employers added 155,000 jobs, despite fears that the fiscal cliff debate in Congress would stifle growth. A total of 12.2 million Americans were unemployed in December. The number of long-term unemployed – people who had been jobless for more than 27 weeks – was unchanged at 4.8 million last month.