By the numbers, the news keeps getting better for the White House.
First, it was a slide in the nation’s unemployment rate to just below 8 percent just before President Barack Obama stood for re-election.
Now, it’s another couple of notches of positive — though mixed, when reading between the lines — news in the morning’s report from the Department of Labor:
With 146,000 jobs added in November, the U.S. jobless rate has fallen to 7.7 percent, the lowest since December 2008 — as the size of the labor force shrank. The poll of households used to calculate the jobless rate showed that 369,000 people were not at work because of bad weather during the survey week. The average of the last 10 Novembers was 70,000.
Still, the gains in hiring indicate consumer spending, the biggest part of the economy, will keep expanding, as Bloomberg’s Shobhana Chandra reports.