Business hiring is holding up, allaying concerns about a U.S. economic downdraft in the face of a looming fiscal cliff.
Companies added an average 121,000 workers a month in the third quarter, up from 88,000 in the second quarter, according to Labor Department figures released on Oct. 5. Total payrolls, including government, increased an average 146,000 a month, compared with 67,000 in the prior period.
“Rising home prices have caused many homeowners to once again feel more comfortable with their net worth, which in turn fuels the economy’s expansion, which then spurs greater demand for housing,” Robert Toll, chairman of the Horsham, Pennsylvania-based company, said in an Aug. 22 conference call with analysts.
The winner of the Nov. 6 presidential election will have a big say in how the year-end fiscal squeeze will be handled, Andy Stern, former president of the Service Employees International Union, said at a Sept. 13 Bloomberg Markets conference in New York. Obama has said he wants to allow the scheduled tax increases on the wealthy. Romney opposes any rise in taxes.