Friday, July 25, 2014

Jobs Day is coming soon — here's what you should know

Friday at 8:30 AM eastern time, the Bureau of Labor Statistics will release its monthly Employment Situation Report. In other words, it's Jobs Day!

We'll have the numbers for you when they're available. For now, the context.

On April 30, the Commerce Department reported an awful GDP number for the first quarter of the year. The report could have had a silver lining if it had convinced the Federal Reserve to do more to help the economy. But later that day the Federal Reserve decided to keep their policies exactly the same, arguing that there are signs the economy picked up late in the quarter after a bad winter and that the labor market keeps improving.

The new jobs numbers will help us see whether that was a huge mistake or not.

Reuters' poll of economists is expecting 210,000 net new seasonally adjusted jobs for April. If we hit that, or if we come close and see upward revisions to the February and March numbers, then everything will look fine. But if we fall short of expectations or see downward revisions to the past two months, then it's going to look like the Fed made a big error by standing still in the face of a weak quarter.

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