Job creation in the United States as reported by non-farm payrolls for the month of February came in well below estimates with 20,000 new hires, as opposed to the consensus estimate of 180,000. With all of the delayed data and massive revisions due to the government shutdown, it is very possible the number is a fluke and will be revised higher. There is also no doubt that the Federal Reserve raising interest rates put a damper on economic activity. The Chinese trade war is also causing a global slowdown that is showing itself in the U.S. economy.
With all the misallocated resources due to China’s, and frankly Obama’s, economic policies, there will be a period of adjustment and fits and starts as the American economy realigns to a pro-growth administration.
Wage data was strong for the month:
Labor Force Participation Feb 63.2%
Average Hourly Earnings Feb MoM +0.4% vs +0.6%
Average Hourly Earnings Feb YoY +3.4% vs +3.35
Housing Starts Jan MoM 1.23M vs 1.197M
Housing Starts Change Jan +18.6%
Average Hourly Wages Feb YoY +2.25%