Preview: what to expect from NFP? Views from the major banks r
We expect a January non-farm payrolls print of 200k (consensus +175k, last +156k). We also expect the unemployment rate to fall one-tenth to 4.6% − which would mark a return to the cycle low – in part driven by reduced year-end retail layoffs. We expect average hourly earnings to rise 0.3% month over month and 2.8% year over year reflecting firming wage growth and state-level minimum wage hikes.
We forecast non-farm payroll to have increased 175k in January, a pick-up from the December slowdown. We forecast for the unemployment rate to decline one tenth to 4.6%. We expect average hourly earnings to increase 0.3% m/m and for the average weekly hours to be unchanged at 34.3.
We look for nonfarm payroll job growth of 160,000 in January, about unchanged from 156,000 in the prior month and the 3-month moving average of 165,000. There have been some discussions in the news about a hiring freeze of federal workers, but this should have only a very minimal impact on the jobs report, as the average monthly gain in federal jobs over the past year was 3,000 and the freeze only went into effect January 22. The unemployment rate is likely to hold at 4.7%, which assumes little change in the labor force participation rate. However, there is certainly scope for changes in the labor force. Given that the unemployment rate is already at or below most measures of full employment, there is a great deal of attention placed on the trend going forward. A further decline in the unemployment rate—even if prompted by a drop in the labor force participation rate—would strengthen the case for the Fed to hike rates, putting upward pressure on our forecast of 1 hike for this year.
We forecast 175k for total payroll growth, 167k on private payrolls, 4.7% on the unemployment rate and 0.3% on average hourly earnings.
Nomura: We expect a positive employment report for January – job gains above the recent trend, steady increase in wages, and a tick-down in the unemployment rate. We forecast private payrolls in January to increase 200k and public payrolls to increase 5k for a total increase of 205k. We also forecast a 0.3% increase in average hourly earnings, consistent with the mild acceleration in the overall trend. We expect the unemployment rate to tick down to 4.6% from 4.7% as labor markets tighten just a touch further.
Our January nonfarm payroll forecast is for an increase of 175K, following a 156K rise in December. We look for an unchanged unemployment rate at 4.7% and a slight slowdown in average hourly earnings growth (+0.25% vs +0.39%), leaving the YoY pace at +2.7% vs +2.9% in December. We look for an average workweek of 34.4 hours–up slightly from December. The range of street estimates for NFP centers between +150K and +185K with the median near +170K. The average payroll gain over the prior 3 months was +165K and +188K over the past 6 months.
We look for Non-Farm Payrolls to increase by 175k in January, nothing to write home about, but easily enough to continue supporting tighter policy. We forecast for the unemployment rate to stay unchanged at 4.7%