American companies added 312,000 employees in December, the highest number in 10 months and far above the figure economists expected. Average hourly wages were up 3.2 percent from a year earlier, also exceeding estimates, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics figures early Friday. The unemployment rate bumped up to 3.9 percent—moving off its nearly 50-year low. Analysts attributed that to more people seeking new jobs. The news comes amid gyrating U.S. stock markets and investors’ increased fears of a recession.
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