Putting Today's Job Number In "Seasonally Adjusted" Context

Tyler Durden's picture

Today's jobs number is expected to come at 125,000, with a high estimate of 154,000 from John Hancock financial, and a low of 30,000 from Westpac Banking, and with a whisper expectation at 150,000 courtesy of yesterday's "stronger than expected" ADP re-revised print. A beat or miss at over 1 standard deviation will promptly wake the HFT algos from their deep slumber. Wait did we say miss? Hah. Anyway, just to put today's seasonally adjusted expected monthly job growth in context, below is a chart showing the average seasonal adjustment for each month of the year in the past decade. In October, seasonal adjustments subtract just over 1 million "jobs" (purely statistically of course, merely to smooth the underlying "noise"). This means that the final monthly print will be just over 10% of the actual X-12-ARIMA goalseeked statistical adjustment. Add to this another ~80K or so which will be "added" from the birth death adjustment, and one can see how in the grand scheme of things, the statistical error factor alone dwarfs what is the actual underlying data. To think that in this labyrinth of layered adjustments to an actual number, the BLS will somehow allow the final number to be disappointing means having a locked bid on the Alaska to Russia bridge market.