by Scott Rosenquist, CFA
Employment data for the month of December was released last week showing a decline of 140,000 jobs, the first negative number since April. The unemployment remained unchanged at 6.7%. The COVID resurgence has led to new restrictions across the country and cold weather is keeping people indoors. This is reflected in the job losses from the leisure and hospitality sector which dropped by 498,000. There was job growth in professional and business services, construction, and retail but not enough to keep the headline number dipping into negative territory.