Heading into tomorrow’s Non Farm Payrolls (NFP) report for March, economists are expecting an increase in payrolls of 245K, which would be a decline of 50K from last month’s reading of 295K. In the private sector, economists are expecting a similar decline from 288K to 235K. Economists are also forecasting the unemployment rate to remain unchanged at 5.5%. Finally, growth in average hourly earnings is expected to increase to 0.2% from last month’s 0.1% growth rate, while hours worked is forecast to remain unchanged at 34.6.
As we do each month, we just sent out our monthly preview of the Non Farm Payrolls report to clients. This report is full of useful information that investors should be aware of ahead of tomorrow’s report. We start out with a recap of how roughly 20 different indicators changed in March relative to February. From there we also summarize the historical performance of the S&P 500 on prior employment report Fridays based on whether or not the report came in better or worse than expected. This analysis even includes a look at the best and worst performing stocks from the open to close on the day of the report.
Last month’s jobs report came in handily better than expected, exceeding consensus forecasts by 60K (295K vs. 235K). Based on the prior history of February employment reports, though, that upside surprise shouldn’t have been too surprising. Going back to mid-1998, data from our Interactive Economic Indicator Database shows that the February employment has come in better than expected more often than any other report. Do we typically see that upside strength in the March report as well? Sign up for Bespoke Premium to find out.