The U.S. economy added 128,000 jobs in October — more than the 75,000 economists expected — while the unemployment rate ticked higher to 3.6%, the government said on Friday.
The strong numbers come despite job growth held down by the 40-day United Auto Workers strike against General Motors, which has since ended. The strike shaved 46,000 jobs from October’s report. The strikers’ return to work will be reflected in November’s report.
Job growth in previous months was better than initially thought. A combined 95,000 more jobs than previously estimated were added in August and September.
The bottom line: The October jobs report had a low hurdle to clear, given the downbeat estimates around employment. Still, the report is strong enough to ward off fears of a broad-based slowdown.