The latest jobs report showed wages are finally going up, as employers added the largest number of workers in nearly three years in November. Bobbi Rebell reports.
Bringing home the bacon is becoming a bit easier for many Americans. The latest job survey not only showed a big jump in the number of jobs created - but also a bigger than expected rise in wages and more hours worked. Wells Fargo Chief Economist John Silvia: SOUNDBITE: JOHN SILVIA, CHIEF ECONOMIST, WELLS FARGO (ENGLISH) SAYING: "That suggests that not only are more jobs being created but the compensation is higher associated with that, particularly again, in some of the more skilled areas such as information finance education and in health. Those wage gains were pretty significant. " It all adds up to a labor market that is tightening- and good news for workers who've been stuck in a job- and now feel more confident about leaving- Gad Levanon, managing director, conference board: SOUNDBITE: GAD LEVANON, MANAGING DIRECTOR, THE CONFERENCE BOARD (ENGLISH) SAYING: "Another important indicator that I know Janet Yellen is looking at is the quits rate from the jobs survey which is also bumped up recently so you know it will be harder and harder for the Fed not to raise rates and if we have a few more months like we had in November I wouldn't be surprised if the Fed starts raising rates in the spring of 2015." And that is why financial stocks rose in reaction to the report- because higher rates, sooner rather than later, would help prop up earnings in the sector. It also put pressure on utilities, which are often attractive because of their dividends. Treasury yields rose. The news also put the spotlight on the outlook for wages- as the economy continues to gain steam. White House Economic Advisor Jason Furman: SOUNDBITE: JASON FURMAN, CHAIRMAN, WHITE HOUSE COUNCIL OF ECONOMIC ADVISORS (ENGLISH) SAYING: "One step we could take is raising the minimum wage. States all over the country have done so including several states on election day this year voted to do that. We'd like to see that happen at a national level. creating more good jobs by investing in infrastructure to rebuild our roads and bridges is another step that would raise wages. " In fact while November's jump was more than expected- wage growth is still not great, up just 2.1 percent from a year ago - still below the 3 percent the Fed would want to see before raising rates.