US employers added a robust 228,000 jobs in November, a sign of the job market's enduring strength in its ninth year of economic recovery, per the AP. The Labor Department says the unemployment rate remained at a 17-year low of 4.1%. The economy is expanding at a healthy pace, and in many cases employers are scrambling to hire enough qualified workers. Over the past six months, growth has exceeded an annual rate of 3%, the first time that's happened since 2014. Consumer confidence has reached its highest level since 2000.
One downside: Healthy hiring and a low unemployment rate have yet to push up wages, which rose 2.5% in November compared with a year earlier. The last time unemployment was this low, wages were rising at a 4% rate. The new report probably won't change the Federal Reserve's expected decision to raise interest rates later this month, notes the Wall Street Journal. (Read more unemployment stories.)