US non-farm payrolls preview

The dollar has taken a knock of late, but with the overall trend in the data still strong, that state of affairs is unlikely to last.

US jobs growth in August is expected to rebound after recent weakness. It’s expected that 192,000 jobs have been created during the month, up from 157,000 in July. This returns job growth closer to the 200,000 mark that has been viewed as the healthy level for more than three years.

On the wages front, average hourly earnings are expected to rise by 0.3%, in line with the previous month’s figure, while the unemployment rate is expected to fall to 3.8% from 3.9%.

These are not exactly inspiring numbers, but the US economy is solidly into its expansion phase. What is worth noting is that the last 18 months of the Obama administration saw an average of 190,000 jobs created each month. For the first 18 months of the current administration, the figure has been 190,000. For all US President Donald Trump’s boasts about bringing jobs back to America, he has actually achieved very little.

Non-farm payrolls

Discover what the non-farm payrolls report is –
including the date of the next release, and
why it’s important to traders. 


Month-on-month wage growth also remains solidly in line with the figures seen since the middle of 2013. It continues to oscillate around the 0.2% month-on-month mark, i.e. good, but not great.

These non-farm payrolls arrive after a difficult two weeks for the US dollar. The greenback has been steadily rising since the end of January, but recent comments from Trump regarding Federal Reserve (Fed) policy, and a general sense of exhaustion in the rally for the time being, have seen the dollar index give back some of its gains.

The $93.50 area on the US Dollar Index represents possible support, with a break below this opening the way to $92.75. Overall the trend is still up from the March lows, with the breakout from the post-2017 downtrend line marking a sea change for the currency. Unless we see the price below $92.00 it makes sense to expect the dollar bull run to revive.

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