Tim Mullaney was national economics correspondent for USA Today from 2011 to 2014, and writes about economics, health care and technology. You can reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @timmullaney.
How President Trump's proposed government stimulus measures might affect the economy was a key question at the Federal Open Markets Committee's most recent meeting.
The results, with the slowing job creation and forecast miss, weaken President-elect Donald Trump's argument that his election has brought hope to U.S. businesses and workers.
Private sector employers added 153,000 workers in December, missing forecasts for 172,000 new jobs in a survey by Econoday, and down sharply from a revised 215,000 positions in November.
Inflation is so low, the Fed thinks it has time to react to Trump's stimulus after it kicks in.
The minutes of the Federal Reserve's meeting in December suggested more aggressive rate hikes in 2017.
Two big indicators suggest consumers are growing more confident in the economy as Trump prepares to take office.
Gross domestic product increased at an annual rate of 3.5% between July and September, the Commerce Department said. That was quicker than the department estimated last month.
Interest rates on mortgages are rising, hampering shoppers' budgets, but builders think Trump may help remove regulatory barriers that have hampered some construction.
Wednesday's rate hike was widely expected, with rate futures indicating a 90% chance the Federal Reserve's monetary policy committee would act.
The data arrived on the day the Fed is expected to raise short-term interest rates for the first time this year -- and the second since the 2008 financial crisis.
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