Given Thursday’s positive jobs data, it was felt that Friday’s non farm payroll report could have been strong. However, it wasn’t to be as the figure came in well below expectations. It was forecast to come in at 190,000 but the US economy actually only created 148,000 new jobs in December. However, the figure is actually positive – it just doesn’t appear that impressive when contrasted with what had been predicted.
Context is everything in these circumstances. For, while there was a sharp drop in retail workers (a loss of some 20,300 jobs), December’s reading means that the US economy has created jobs for 87 months in a row. Ultimately, as a result of this, the jobless rate is now at 4.1% – its lowest mark since the end of 2000.
Meanwhile, non-manufacturing PMI came in at 55.9 which, well below the 57.6 expected, still represents healthy growth and a robust economy.
It’s a quiet start to the week for economic data, although we will see initial jobless claims up to 6 January on Thursday. Friday is the main highlight of the week, as we will see the inflation rate and retail sales for December.
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