Despite its economic challenges in recent years, the U.S. economy is improving year after year thanks to the addition of new jobs. And 2015 proved to be one of the best years yet, adding 2.65 million jobs to the economy.
CNN Money reports that 2015 was the second best year the American job market has seen since 1999. Employers added 292,000 jobs nationwide in December, but the growth won’t stop there. Economists surveyed by CNN Money predict that another 211,000 jobs will be added at the start of 2016.
The unemployment rate has plateaued at 5% for the past three months, but it is dramatically lower than it was at the start of the year. Since a 0% unemployment rate is realistically impossible, economists consider this low percentage almost near “full employment” for the nation.
With the increase in jobs, Americans are enjoying increases in their wages as well. Wages grew a full 2.5% in the past year.
These two points — decreased unemployment and increased wages — mark a distinct turning point in the U.S. economy. Compared to 2009 when the unemployment rate was a staggering 9.9%, the numbers from this year are promising and prove that America is on the right track.
The increase in jobs is beneficial to the economy in many ways: more jobs means more money earned, and more money earned leads to more disposable income to pump throughout the economy.
There is hope that U.S. employees will be able to retain their jobs and continue to circulate money through the economy. A shocking statistic shows that a full 57% of organizations see employee retention as a problem.
The article points out that this year of momentous gains was not without its hiccups. In the summer, job growth was stifled.
The sharp increase in job gains picked back up around the holiday season. October, November and December saw the greatest increases.
Despite the state of the global economy, which has slowed across the board, the U.S. remains resilient. This year’s gains “should keep the U.S. expansion on track despite downside risks from abroad,” says Jesse Hurwtiz, senior U.S. economist at Barclays. On December: “Overall, it was a very strong report.”