National wage gains highest in 7 years. Average hourly wages increased 10 cents after dipping in November, rising 10 cents to $26 and they’re up 2.9% annually, the most since June 2009. Pay gains are expected to accelerate as the low unemployment rate forces employers to bid up to attract a more limited pool of workers.
"With wage growth climbing again, the modest drop-off in employment growth won't stop the Fed from (raising interest rates) again this year," according to economist Paul Ashworth of Capital Economics. The Fed raised its benchmark interest rate last month for the first time in a year.