US jobs and manufacturing activity My Wednesday column

This post is available in pdf formatĀ My Wedenesday Column – November 7

US job growth is buoyant, but is it all down to the Trump effect?
The US economy created 250,000 jobs in October, which is a bit higher than the average of 213,000 witnessed since the start of the year. However, October is usually a fairly good month for new job creation, with 271,000 in October 2017, and an average of 246,000 in the month of October since 2013 as compared to an average of 206,000 for other months.
The labor market is buoyant overall, reflecting a solid pace of economic growth although nothing to write home about with 2.25% per year on average since 2011.US jobs Continue reading

US Job Market in October: A catch up or a change in trend?

The number of new jobs, 271 000, is strong in October. In absolute terms this is remarkable. The question we must ask is the following: is it a change in trend or just a catch up after two mediocre months?
If this is a change in trend with a November figure consistent with that of October then this increase, for sure, the likelihood of Fed rate hike in December. This is the reasoning that one often reads, at least implicitly, this afternoon. If it’s just a catch then the question of a change of Fed’s strategy remains.

The problem is this: In the last three months (August, September, and October 2015), average job creations were 187,000 after 243,000 in the previous three months. In 2014, for the same 3 months the figure was 228,000 and that of the previous three months was 257 000. The profile is similar but at a lower level than in 2014. There are no additional tensions spontaneously when we look at the data. Continue reading