MADISON, Wis. (1/7/11)--The U.S. labor market will improve in 2001, albeit slowly, a Credit Union National Association (CUNA) economist told Investor’s Business Daily Wednesday. U.S. private firms hired 297,000 employees in December--the most since record-keeping began in 2000--according to ADP Employer Services. “It remains to be seen whether big jumps like that (in the ADP report) are the rule or the exception,” Mike Schenk, CUNA vice president of economics and statistics, told Investor’s Business Daily. “Our view is that labor markets will be improving, but doing so slowly.” Despite his forecast for 3% economic growth, Schenk said the jobless rate will remain above 9% through 2011. That’s partially because of a skills disconnect between jobs that are available and people who are looking for work, he said. Unskilled former construction and manufacturing workers confront a particularly tough job search, Schenk told the publication. To read the article, use the link.