U.S. Added 312,000 Jobs in December, Way Above Estimates

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.