2011 Economic Calendar
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Event Definitions   |   Today's Calendar

Employment Situation
Released On 12/2/2011 8:30:00 AM For Nov, 2011
PriorPrior RevisedConsensusConsensus RangeActual
Nonfarm Payrolls - M/M change80,000 100,000 131,000 90,000  to 175,000 120,000 
Unemployment Rate - Level9.0 %9.0 %9.0 % to 9.1 %8.6 %
Average Hourly Earnings - M/M change0.2 %0.3 %0.2 %0.1 % to 0.2 %-0.1 %
Av Workweek - All Employees34.3 hrs34.3 hrs34.3 hrs to 34.4 hrs34.3 hrs
Private Payrolls - M/M change104,000 117,000 150,000 115,000  to 190,000 140,000 

Highlights
The November jobs report overall came in with improvement, though there were mixed results. The unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped sharply. Payroll jobs in November advanced a relatively strong 120,000 after gaining a revised 100,000 in October (originally 80,000) and increased a revised 210,000 in September (previously 158,000). Analysts forecast a 131,000 boost in overall payrolls. Revisions for September and October were up net 72,000.

Once again, private payrolls gained more than overall. Private nonfarm payrolls gained 140,000, following a 117,000 increase in October and 220,000 rise in September. The November boost fell short of market expectations for a 150,000 increase.

In the private sector, goods-producing jobs slipped 6,000 after a 4,000 decrease in October and 36,000 boost in September. Construction jobs fell 12,000 in October after decreasing 15,000 the month before. Manufacturing employment edged up 2,000 after a 6,000 rise in October. Mining increased 2,000, following a 6,000 rise the prior month.

Private service-providing jobs advanced 146,000 in November, following a 121,000 gain the prior month. The November increase was led by trade & transportation (up 58,000), professional & business services (up 33,000), leisure & hospitality (up 22,000), health care (up 12,000). The temp help subcomponent of professional & business services rose 22,000 after a 16,000 gain.

The public sector continued to decline as government employment decreased 20,000, following a 17,000 drop in October.

Wage growth has been volatile recently as average hourly earnings in November slipped 0.1 percent, following an upwardly revised 0.3 percent gain the month before. Analysts predicted a 0.2 percent increase for November. On average, wage growth has been growing but at an anemic pace. Given the upward revision to October, the November dip should not been so disconcerting. Still, the uptrend is modest. The average workweek for all workers in November was unchanged at 34.3 hours, matching the market median forecast.

From the household survey, the unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped to 8.6 percent from 9.0 percent in October. The consensus forecast called for 9.0 percent. The rate decline reflected a 594,000 fall in the number of unemployed and a 278,000 increase in household employment. Basically, the unemployment rate fell largely due to a decline in the participation rate although household employment growth recently continues to exceed payroll jobs growth by a notable degree.

Overall, the latest employment report is favorable for the recovery continuing to gain traction. On the news, equity futures edged down as expectations were slightly stronger for payroll data and the unemployment rate dip was discounted.

Recent History Of This Indicator
IMPORTANT NOTE: The consensus figures were updated mid-afternoon, Thursday, with updated responses following ADP and jobless claims.

Nonfarm payroll employment in October posted a gain of 80,000 after rising 158,000 in September and increasing 104,000 in August. Revisions for August and September were up net 102,000. As in recent months, greater strength was seen in private nonfarm payrolls which advanced 104,000, following a 191,000 rise in September and a 72,000 increase in August. Earnings were moderately healthy as average hourly earnings in October rose 0.2 percent, following a 0.3 percent boost the month before. The average workweek for all workers in October was unchanged at 34.3 hours. From the household survey, the unemployment rate edged down to 9.0 percent from 9.1 percent in September.

Definition
The employment situation is a set of labor market indicators based on two separate surveys in this one report. The unemployment rate equals the number of unemployed persons divided by the total number of persons in the labor force, which comes from a survey of 60,000 households (this is called the household survey). Workers are only counted once, no matter how many jobs they have, or whether they are only working part-time. In order to be counted as unemployed, one must be actively looking for work. Other commonly known figures from the Household Survey include the labor supply and discouraged workers.  Why Investors Care
 
[Chart]
During the mature phase of an economic expansion, monthly payrolls gains of 150,000 or so are considered relatively healthy. In the early stages of recovery though, gains are expected to surpass 250,000 per month.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
 
[Chart]
The civilian unemployment rate is a lagging indicator of economic activity. During a recession, many people leave the labor force entirely, so the jobless rate may not increase as much as expected. This means that the jobless rate may continue to increase in the early stages of recovery because more people are returning to the labor force as they believe they will be able to find work. The civilian unemployment rate tends towards greater stability than payroll employment on a monthly basis. It reveals the degree to which labor resources are utilized in the economy.
Data Source: Haver Analytics
 

 

2011 Release Schedule
Released On: 1/72/43/44/15/66/37/88/59/210/711/412/2
Release For: DecJanFebMarAprMayJunJulAugSepOctNov
 


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