The US labour market is set to find out how it finished 2014 on Friday.
The December jobs report is set for release from the BLS at 8:30 am ET.
Via Bloomberg, here’s a quick overview of Wall Street’s consensus expectations:
- Nonfarm payrolls: +240,000
- Unemployment rate: 5.7%
- Average hourly earnings, month-on-month: +0.2%
- Average hourly earnings, year-on-year: +2.2%
- Average hourly hours worked: 34.6
In November, the US economy added 321,000 jobs, blowing away expectations and marking the tenth-straight month that payrolls grew by more than 200,000, the longest such streak since 1995.
The unemployment rate held steady at 5.8% in November, while the “U-6” unemployment rate which includes those working part-time for economic reasons fell to 11.4% from 11.5%.
Wall Street’s View
In December, Wall Street expects the streak of payrolls gains over 200,000 will continue for an 11th month, though only one analyst followed by Business Insider expects job growth to top 300,000 for the second time in a row.
Brian Jones at Societe Generale is Wall Street’s most bullish analyst ahead of the jobs report, writing in a note to clients that among other factors, initial jobless claims below 300,000 and favourable weather conditions should allow the jobs report to print another “eye-catching” number.
At Pantheon Macroeconomics, Ian Shepherdson expects payroll gains of 275,000 in December. Like Jones, Shepherdson cites the low level of claims, and also points to survey data indicating strong hiring intentions from business owners.
On the more conservative end of things, Joe LaVorgna at Deutsche Bank expects payrolls grew by 200,000 in December. LaVorgna, in contrast to Jones, cites a “mild negative impact from weather” in making his forecast, but adds that, “a moderately below-trend December payroll gain should in no way be interpreted as a loss of labour market momentum.”
Also below consensus are Ward McCarthy at Jefferies who expects payrolls gains of 210,000, and Chris Rupkey at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ who is looking for payrolls to grow by 215,000 in December.
As always, Business Insider will have complete wall-to-wall coverage of the report on Friday morning.