The Day at a Glance | January 8 2021

The Top

· US records loss in jobs in December (-140k vs 50k e.); this is the first contraction in employment since April.

· Crude oil production in Mexico averaged 1.63 million daily barrels up to the end of November.

· Consumer confidence in Mexico improved in December (38.1 vs 36.9 prev.).

· US suspends French tariffs over digital services tax.

Economic environment

Employment figures in the US surprised to the downside as they recorded their first monthly loss in jobs since the start of the recovery in April. The labor market showed clear signs of weakness amidst the fast spread of the virus in the country as it recorded a loss of 140 thousand jobs in December. The loss of jobs was mostly seen in the services sector (leisure, lodging, education and government), while construction, manufacturing and retail sales partially offset the loss. With this, the rate of unemployment was maintained at 6.7% (10.7 million people). Even though the unemployment rate is seen below the maximum levels seen in April, it`s still far from reaching levels seen prior to the pandemic (3.5% or 5.7 million people). The number of permanent job losses set at 3.4 million in December. The data suggests it`s necessary to maintain fiscal stimuli in 2021 in order to avoid long term consequences in the labor market as the virus continues to affect it while the distribution of vaccines is under way.

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