- Employment in the U.S. Labor Market has remained weak in August but wasn’t weak enough to call into question the underlying strength of the U.S. labor market.
August was the seventh straight month that payrolls fell short of the median estimate of economists. 156,000 jobs were added compared to a projection of 180,000 according to the latest government figures.
Despite this, the labor market remains healthy in a mature expansion. Economists were also quick to point out the difficulty adjusting the August data because of differing start times of the new school year and swings in summer employment. What’s more, the monthly figures have been revised higher in five of the past six years.
“There’s a lot of statistical quirks embedded in here — nothing fundamental. It’s a slow-moving ship and we’re still optimistic that wage growth will pick up in the coming months given the strength in the labor market.”” said James Smith, a developed markets economist at ING Bank NV.
Gary Cohn, President Donald Trump’s top economic adviser, said Harvey would affect economic data for several months and make it much harder for officials to get the “bigger picture” of what’s going on in the economy.
“The economic data that we’ve just gotten — this unemployment data — is probably the last set of clean unemployment data we’re going to have for many, many months as we go through the recovery process,” he said in an interview on Bloomberg Television.