The Labor Department announced on Friday that employers hired 146,000 new workers last month. The nation’s unemployment rate edged down to 7.7% in November, the lowest unemployment rate in four years.
Economists had expected the economy to add just 86,000 workers in November, the New York Times noted.
The government noted that Hurricane Sandy, which slammed coastal areas of New York, New Jersey and Connecticut in late October, appeared to have had little impact on the unemployment rate.
Analysts said that November’s job creation data showed an economy still recovering from the economic downturn.
Factory jobs declined by 7,000 last month. Workers saw their average hourly earnings rise 0.2%.
Previously issued job numbers for September and October were revised down, however. The government said the economy added 49,000 fewer jobs during those months than earlier estimates.