Friday, September 6, 2013

US Non Farm Payrolls seen as a big disappointment

- The August jobs report was mostly a bomb, although analysts are working hard to find the positives in the data. The non-farm measure missed expectations and the back-month revision to the July data was severe (to +104K from +162K). 

Despite the revisions, the US has averaged 183K jobs added per month over the past year, and this report does not change the trajectory of slow, steady job growth. Nevertheless the unemployment rate fell to 7.3% from 7.4%, raising the very real possibility that it could hit 7% by year-end. 

Some suggest this report could prompt the Fed to start to back away from the unemployment rate as a major policy indicator. PIMCO's Bill Gross said the Fed is still likely to taper despite today's data, perhaps on the order of $10B initially.

- Syria is the other big subject this morning. With world leaders in St. Petersburg, Russia for the G20, Russia President Putin and Barak Obama have a big stage to air their opposing views of the situation. 

Just after the open, Putin stated that Russia would help Syria if strikes are launched by the west; later he clarified his remarks by saying Russia would merely continue its current level of support for Syria, but in any case many participants blamed the equity declines into negative territory on his remarks. 

President Obama dodged questions at a press conference about what he would do if Congress voted against military action, saying only that he would address the nation from the White House next Tuesday on the issue.

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