Friday preview: US December non-farm payrolls in the spotlight

updated: 7 January 2021 at 7:15pm Author: Alexander Bueso

(Sharecast News) - All eyes will be on the monthly US non-farm payrolls report at the end of the week, which most economists - but not all - expect to show a further slowing in hiring as Covid-19 restrictions continue to bite.


Consensus is a for slowdown in the pace of job creation from November's pace of 245,000 to just 71,000.

Ian Shepherdson at Pantheon Macroeconomics on the other hand is expecting a small upside surprise in the form of a print of 300,000.

"If we're right, expect much commentary to the effect that the labor market is proving surprisingly resilient in the face of the Covid third wave.

"That might be true, but only at the margin. Step back more than an inch or two and note that payrolls will still be some [nine-and-a-half] million lower than in February last year, immediately before the pandemic, and that 300K monthly gains wouldn't recover those lost jobs until mid- 2023. The rate of job recovery has slowed to a crawl [...].

"We aren't going to celebrate until the end of the pandemic allows payroll growth to get back close to one million per month."

On home shores meanwhile, the Recruitment and Employment Confederation will release its Permanent Staff Placements and Salaries indices for December.

Across the Channel, the main data points due out are for German industrial production and French household consumption in November.

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