Seeking Alpha
Banks, long-term horizon
Profile| Send Message|
( followers)  

Employment numbers were released this morning. I can't add anything more at this time than what Jon Hilsenrath of the Wall Street Journal says about this in this piece. Take a look at his whole piece.

To be specific, Hilsenrath starts out by writing, "Friday's jobs report looks encouraging on the surface but a little flaky not far beneath it, in part because of the way the government shutdown affected data gathering."

One the one hand, "The household survey - which measures unemployment based on surveys of households - looked dismal on the surface: An increase in the jobless rate, big drops in labor force participation, measures of those employed and the employment-to-population ratio."

But, then again, on the other hand, "the establishment survey - which produces hiring data based on surveys of businesses - looked quite encouraging. Average hiring has picked up to more than 200,000 per month, thanks in part to upward revisions to hiring estimates before the government shutdown started. That looks like it reverses a worrying summer hiring slowdown. Earnings of employees also look like they're picking up."

Bottom line: "because of potential data flukes and the mixed comparisons of the household and payroll surveys," the Federal Reserve will probably have to wait at least through December to decide whether or not to begin the "tapering" of its security purchases.

People want to find information that economic growth is starting to accelerate. They particularly want to see optimistic enough data to justify the Federal Reserve change its buying habits. The search for "green shoots" never ends! We saw a similar response when the third quarter GDP numbers were released yesterday.

And, all this attention to fine detail in the release of statistics is just leading to more and more of what I have called "central bank risk". By 11:30 today prices for the 10-year Treasury bond had fallen by 1 6/32 and for the 30-year Treasury bond had fallen by 2 6/32.

The times are volatile and the Federal Reserve has made them more so. One big problem is that economic data and economic models are far less than perfect!

Source: Still Looking For 'Green Shoots' - Part 2