Chart of the Day #2: Net New Jobs in October

The American economy gained 250,000 jobs last month. We need 90,000 new jobs just to keep up with population growth, which means that net job growth clocked in at a respectable 160,000 jobs. The unemployment rate stayed steady at 3.7 percent.

Wages of production and nonsupervisory workers were up at a monthly rate of 0.31 percent and a year-over-year rate of 0.86 percent. That’s not bad at all.

Finally, the labor force participation ticked up 0.2 percent. Assuming that the increase was the same for prime-age workers (age 25-54), it means that prime-age workers are continuing to enter (or re-enter) the labor force. We’re still about a percentage point below where we could be, but that’s a guess since there’s been a secular decline in the participation rate for both men and women ever since 2000, so we don’t really know where we “should” be in the first place.

BLS warns that Hurricane Michael may have affected the employment numbers, but probably not significantly. So with the usual caveat that one month doesn’t mean a lot, this was a very nice employment report, especially the wage data.

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REAL QUICK, REAL URGENT

Minority rule, corruption, disinformation, attacks on those who dare tell the truth: There is a direct line from what's happening in Russia and Ukraine to what's happening here at home. And that's what MoJo's Monika Bauerlein writes about in "Their Fight Is Our Fight" to unpack the information war we find ourselves in and share a few examples to show why the power of independent, reader-supported journalism is such a threat to authoritarians.

Corrupt leaders the world over can (and will) try to shut down the truth, but when the truth has millions of people on its side, you can't keep it down for good. And there's no more powerful or urgent argument for your support of Mother Jones' journalism right now than that. We need to raise about $450,000 to hit our online fundraising budget in these next few months, so please read more from Monika and pitch in if you can.

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