The strength of an economy is measured by several factors. Some of these factors are the strength of the GDP, the labour participation rate, inflation, business and consumer confidence, activity in the manufacturing and services industries, wage growth, and output from companies. An economy that is growing strong is an indication that the country’s fiscal and monetary plans are working. Today, the labour department in the US will release the jobs numbers for the month of July.
The jobs number is a very important measure of the health of the economy. Traders and investors love an economy that is adding more high-paying jobs. This is because this tends to increase the demand for goods and services offered by these companies.
In recent days, the news media has highlighted the plight of companies and their challenge for finding employees. It has been noted that there are more job vacancies than there are people to fill them. This has led to companies – including Trump’s Mar-a-Lago – asking for foreign workers.
Today, traders expect the data from the labour department to show that the economy added 193K people. This will be a decline from last month’s data of 213K. They also expect the private non-farm payrolls to be 189K, which will be slightly lower than the 202K released a month ago. These numbers will be watched closely because they will give traders an indication of how the economy is working.
However, they will focus on two major data today. First, they will pay close attention to the participation rate. This data shows the percentage of people who are actively looking for work opportunities. An increasing participation rate is a good thing for the economy because it reduces the burden of welfare. Last month, the unemployment rose from 3.8% to 4.0% mostly because of the increase in the participation rate. In today’s report, traders expect the participation to rise to 63% from last month’s 62.9%. The unemployment rate is expected to move to 3.9% from last month’s 4.0%.
The second important data traders will look at is the wage number. Rising wages are ideal for an economy that is at full employment. Traders expect the wages to remain at 2.7%. On a month over month basis, they expect the wages to rise by 0.3%. The number of weekly hours is expected to remain at 34.5 hours.
Indications are that the economy added more jobs than anticipated in July. On Wednesday, ADP’s number of private non-farm payrolls showed that the economy added 219K jobs, which was higher than expected. In addition, the consumer confidence during the month rose slightly to 127.4 from the previous month’s 127.1 and Challenger released a 4% drop in layoffs. Further, the four-week average jobless claims fell to 214.5K from last month’s 224.7K, while the continuing claims dropped to 1.72M from 1.74M.