Aug 01, 2012 at 12:42 pm
So I blindfolded my monkey, spun him around 5.7 times,* and had him throw some darts. Which is to say I revved up the JB/OTE forecasting models. I’m getting about 90K on payrolls which is a little below the consensus of 100K (110K for private, implying continued loss of public sector jobs).
The US stock market liked the ADP jobs number — 163K in the private sector. The ADP is a private payroll processing firm that derives their own estimate of national payrolls, sans the gov’t sector. Though the ADP and the BLS data track each other very closely — correlations between levels and changes are above 0.95 — you can’t reliably go from ADP on Wednesday to BLS on Friday. And lately the ADP has been a bit bullish relative to the BLS — not that 160+K is such a great number, btw — it’s slightly north of what we need to tread water on the jobless rate.
Other factors that would lead you to come in closer to consensus are the slowdown in real GDP in the second quarter and the recent growth in the savings rate (see figure). Consumer retrenchment ain’t exactly what the doctor ordered for the job market right now.
So, I hope we’re closer to ADP than consensus but I wouldn’t bet it.
*that’s the natural log of the year/month: ln(2012/7)…duh.
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