Hot jobs in December: Health care, restaurants, construction

Nearly all industry sectors benefited from the robust jobs in December, with health care and education leading the way by adding 82,000 to their payrolls. That was the biggest jump since February 2012. More than 50,000 of those gains came from health care, including doctors’ offices, hospitals, home health care services and medical clinics.

The leisure and hospitality category added 55,000 jobs. The category includes restaurants, bars, hotels and entertainment — all of which recorded jobs gains.

Builders added 38,000 construction jobs, while manufacturers increased their payrolls by 32,000 workers.

Overall, U.S. employers added 312,000 jobs in December. The unemployment rate rose to 3.9 percent, but that’s because more people came off the sidelines to look for jobs, the Labor Department said Friday.

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Industry (change from previous month) December 2018 November 2018 Past 12 months
Construction 38,000 0 280,000
Manufacturing 32,000 27,000 284,000
Retail 23,800 29,200 91,600
Transportation, warehousing 2,200 28,900 189,800
Information (Telecom, publishing) -1,000 -5,000 -16,000
Financial services 6,000 1,000 110,000
Professional services (Accounting, engineering, temp work) 43,000 44,000 583,000
Education and health 82,000 21,000 517,000
Hotels, restaurants, entertainment 55,000 18,000 306,000
Government 11,000 3,000 74,000
Source: Labor Department

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