Monday, March 06, 2017

February NFP Forecasts

by Bill McBride on 3/06/2017 01:35:00 PM

A couple of NFP forecasts ...

From Nomura:

Incoming data on the labor market suggest strong job gains in February. Data on sentiment, including the Empire State, Philly Fed and ISM manufacturing surveys, point to better hiring activity in February. Initial and continuing claims data continued to trend lower, implying that involuntary layoffs remain low and that firms are eager to retain workers. In particular, the 4-week moving average of initial jobless claims inched down further, reaching its lowest point in decades. Based on these positive readings, we forecast private nonfarm payrolls to have added 215k jobs in February. Given the recent employment trend in the public sector, we expect public sector payrolls to remain unchanged. ...

Moreover, we forecast the unemployment rate to inch down slightly to 4.7% in February ... we expect average hourly earnings to have increased by 0.3% m-o-m (2.7% y-o-y) ...
emphasis added
From Merrill Lynch:
We expect nonfarm payrolls to grow by 185,000 in February ... Given the recent bump up in optimism in manufacturing surveys, we could see better job growth in the industrial sector. Moreover, weather conditions have been broadly favorable for construction activity in February as temperatures have been warmer than normal. This could lead to another month of strong payroll gains in the construction sector. We expect limited gains in government payrolls.

We are forecasting the unemployment rate to tick down to 4.7% from 4.8% ... We are forecasting a solid rebound of 0.3% mom gain which will boost the yoy rate to 2.8% (unrounded: 2.75%), which was the trend over the second half of last year.