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Optimism on Jobs 2011

Optimism on Jobs 2011 - The number of U.S. private-sector jobs surged in December at a rate three times stronger than forecast, the most bullish signal in months that a recovery in the world's biggest economy is shifting up a gear.

Private employers added 297,000 jobs last month, payrolls processing company ADP Employer Services said on Wednesday. It was the largest gain on ADP records dating to 2000.

The data came two days ahead of the government's more comprehensive employment report for December, the world's most closely watched economic indicator, and led many economists to raise their payrolls forecasts.

The report sparked a sharp cut in U.S. Treasury debt prices, and the U.S. dollar gained 1.5 percent against the yen, on pace for its biggest one-day gain in more than three months as investors bet on a stronger recovery. Stocks and crude oil futures reversed losses and headed higher.

"Sometimes numbers come as bolts from the blue; this is one of them," said Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics.

Optimism on Jobs 2011

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