Posts filed under “Data Analysis”
Some highlights from the details of this NFP report:
The average work week surprsingly fell -0.1 to 33.7 hours — that hardly indicates a tight labor market; Also noteworthy: overtime ticked up, revealing a (let’s call it) "reluctance" to hire.
The Labor Force Participation Rate was unchanged at 66.1%, despite the civilian labor force growing by 335,000 people. Joanie notes that "the unemployment rate ticked up to 4.8%, as we are not creating enough jobs to absorb new/re-entrants into the labor force" (Otherwise, unemployment would have been flat m/m).
The jobs primarily came from Construction, Mining and service-providing industries: Retail Employment was flat, Food and Drinking scored +23k. Construction added 41k (sub-contractors were 32k of that), Mining added 5k, primarily support activity for oil and gas. Education and Health services added 47k.
Bottom line, a fair report. Not terrible, but not great.
UPDATE March 10, 2006 11:30am
Tony Crescenzi observes that Fed Futures is pricing in:
100% odds that the funds rate will be raised to 4.75% at the March 27-28 FOMC meeting, and a 95% odds that it will be raised to 5.0% at the May 10 meeting. For the June 29 FOMC meeting, the market is priced for a 24% odds of a hike to 5.25%, up from 10% Thursday and 0% a week ago.
If you haven’t already, I strongly admonish you to go read Jesse Eisinger’s column today:
Here’s the money quote:
"The shorting life is nasty and brutish. It’s a wonder anyone does
it at all.
Shorts make a bet that a stock will sink, and nobody else wants
that: Not company executives, employees, investment banks nor most investors.
That’s why most manipulation is on the other side; fewer people object when
share prices are being pumped up. For most on Wall Street, the debate is whether
shorts are anti-American or merely un-American.
Yet in all the paranoia about evil short-sellers badmouthing
companies, what is lost is how agonizingly difficult their business is. They
borrow stock and sell it, hoping to replace the borrowed shares with cheaper
ones bought later so they can pocket the price difference as profit. It’s a
chronologically backward version of the typical long trade: sell high and then
Go forth and read . . .
It’s a Tough Job, So Why Do They Do It?
The Backward Business of Short
WSJ, March 1, 2006; Page C1
UPDATE March 2, 2006 10:32am:
See below for more text