By Kevin Flanagan
Jobs Day last Friday was the final such report before the election. However, given the headlines surrounding President Trump and the First Lady’s COVID-19 diagnoses and the ongoing specter of a potential fiscal stimulus package, this month’s employment data has flown a bit under the radar and had little, if any, immediate impact on the bond market. That being said, labor market improvement continued, albeit at a more moderate pace than the last few months. Here are the key takeaways:
- Despite the “headline miss” for payrolls, the overall report was relatively solid.
- Total nonfarm payrolls (NFP) rose 661,000, visibly lower than the +859,000 consensus estimate, but the prior two months were revised upward by 145,000. Put those two numbers together and the gain (+806,000) is a lot closer to consensus.
- Also, temporary census workers got removed in September, but perhaps more important was the fact that private