The February jobs numbers will be out tomorrow at 8:30AM–I’ll be on CNBC discussing them in real time before I scoot back here to write them up.
My guesses for tomorrow are, FWIW, 160,000 for payrolls overall, 170,000 for private, and unemployment ticks down to 7.7% (all from a simple time series forecasting model which does OK–e.g., last month I was also at 160K and the payroll number was 157K–and no, it doesn’t spit out 160K every month…) I’m coming in a little below consensus, which expects 170K for overall payrolls and 195K for private.
I’m sure folks will be wondering whether the sequestration is anywhere to be seen in these numbers. My answer would be ‘no’ since, of course, it wasn’t in effect yet. But that said, there are anecdotes of firms that contract with the government that were holding back on hiring in recent months based on their realistic expectations that Congress and the WH wouldn’t work this out.