After last month’s surprising, broad-based rise in a variety of wage measures, traders were on the edge of their seats awaiting this morning’s U.S. jobs report. After all, we’ve seen countless “false dawns” heralding the end of the persistent slack in the labor market over the last nine years, but none have proven to be more than a one- or two-month anomaly.
President Trump agreeing to meet the North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un pleasantly surprised the markets on Thursday. Just a couple of months ago, the two leaders were in in a rather childish spat over whose nuclear button was bigger and hurled insults at each other, at every opportunity. Now, they are about to make history, not only with a possible reconciliation but also because this would be the first-ever meeting between a U.S. president and a North Korean leader. Investors are hopeful that there will finally be a diplomatic breakthrough.
Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 313,000 in February, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.1%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on March 9. Employment rose in construction, retail trade, professional and business services, manufacturing, financial activities, and mining.
Despite the president's protestations, the actual data makes it clear that U.S. job creation has downshifted in recent years, though that is not entirely unexpected or even necessarily negative for the labor market. Heading into today's report, the trend was showing continued moderation over the last four years.
Friday’s key event risk will be the U.S. jobs report for January, which should offer fresh insight into the health of the U.S. labor market. With the Federal Reserve expressing optimism over inflation rising this year and a brighter outlook for the economy, today’s NFP report will be in sharp focus. Markets expect the U.S. economy to have gained 180k jobs in January, with average earnings up by 0.3%, while the unemployment rate is expected to remain unchanged at 4.1%.
Total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 200,000 in January, and the unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.1%, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Employment continued to trend up in construction, food services and drinking places, health care, and manufacturing.
U.S. equity markets posted their biggest one-day loss since August 2017 with the Dow dropping 362 points and the S&P 500 losing 31.10, both over the 1% mark. The fall came just hours before the President gave his State of the Union speech on Capitol Hill and hailed the strength of the U.S. economy, the strength of the stock market and the continued trend of job creation.