Economists are expecting that Friday’s labor report will show the lowest job loss in a year even as the unemployment rate rises.
A Bloomberg survey of 79 economists pegs the August job loss at 230,000 and the unemployment rate at 9.5 percent for the month. The last time the U.S. economy lost that few jobs was August 2008 and the last time the economy actually created jobs was in January of 2008. The Bureau of Labor Statistics is scheduled to release the August report tomorrow at 8:30 a.m. EDT.
An ADP report released Wednesday said private, nonfarm employment decreased by 298,000 jobs, which, the payroll management firm said, was the smallest decrease since September of last year.
ADP’s National Employment Report is considered a bell cow for the monthly BLS report, which is typically released a few days after. The BLS includes government jobs; ADP does not.
The optimism in the economic predictions and the improvement suggested in the ADP report got additional support this morning when Monster Worldwide reported a jump in its monthly index. The index rose to 121 in August from 114 in July, its highest point since February. The 6 percent jump is also the highest monthly rate of increase since August 2005.
“The significant jump in the Monster Employment Index in August offers encouraging signs of improvement in the U.S. economy with the demand for managers and professionals as well as sales and office workers picking up in time for the fall hiring season,” said Jesse Harriott, senior vice president and chief knowledge officer at Monster Worldwide.
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Compiled from a survey of online job postings, the Monster Index showed job availability improved everywhere in the country, but especially in New England where the regional index climbed by 10 points. In terms of per capita online job availability, Alaska topped the nation, followed by Montana, Maryland, Virginia, and Massachusetts.
The industry sectors showing the biggest gain in online job postings were retail, up by 13 points; managerial positions, up by nine points; and arts, entertainment and recreation, starting from a very low 37 points, added seven, as did the utility sector, which now has an index of 105.
The Conference Board previously reported that Help Wanted Online Data Series showed a gain of 169,000 advertised vacancies in August, while the Board’s Consumer Confidence Index rose almost seven points over July and now stands at 54.1, the best its been since May.