April NFP surpasses expectations

It’s never wise to discount the US. Today’s NFPs came storming back with a gain of 288,000, while the March number was revised up, too.

Chris Beauchamp provides an update to Brenda Kelly's non farm payrolls  pre-announcement analysis.

The atrocious GDP reading has been banished from traders’ minds, as everyone focuses on the extremely positive headline number, with the drop in unemployment to 6.3% adding to the generally positive feeling. There are still problems beneath the surface, given the shrinkage in the labour force as well, which perhaps explains why markets haven’t exactly exploded with excitement, since it shows that it’s not entirely about job creation and that Americans continue to leave the labour force in droves. This is not an economy that is yet firing on all cylinders.

We continue to keep an eye on the Dow Jones, but an initial spike above 16,600 was swiftly reversed. This level has been the index’s high water mark in the ongoing rally, and the failure to see a leap higher signals that this is a market that remains jittery. Still, with the long weekend ahead for the UK many traders have opted to take their money off the table. If we do get a fifth consecutive daily gain, it will be a very quiet finish. 

Non-farm payrolls since January 2014





Highest estimate

Lowest estimate

Estimate range

10 Jan 197,000 74,000 84,000 250,000 100,000 150,000
7 Feb 180,000 113,000 114,000 270,000 105,000 165,000
7 Mar 149,000 175,000 197,000 220,000 100,000 120,000
4 Apr 200,000 192,000 203,000 275,000 150,000 125,000
2 May 215,000 288,000   250,000 175,000 75,000


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