Goldman: "Weaker Than Expected" Jobs Report Means No Taper Before March

Tyler Durden's picture

Yesterday Goldman explained why glorious and abysmal job numbers would both be sufficient to propel the Stalingrad and Poor to new ATH. So far, they were right. And while the number was not exactly abysmal (ironically, the market is now hung up on weaker than expected data just to make sure Uncle Ben and Uncle Janet stay around as long as possible), it was, as Goldman's Jan Hatzius just announced, "somewhat weaker than expected, as the disappointment on September payroll growth was only partly offset by back-month revisions, while average hourly earnings grew more slowly than expected." He said a bunch of other things too, but the most notable was that "this report makes it more likely that the Fed pushes the first reduction in the pace of its asset purchases into 2014... we think that March is the most likely date under our economic forecast." And since it is now obvious that the Fed is completely oblivious to what ongoing QE does to high quality collateral (which it is now soaking up at a pace of 0.4% in 10Yr equivs per week), full steam ahead it is. We expect Dudley to get his Hatzius marching orders shortly.

From Goldman:

The unemployment rate ticked down, but benefitted from favorable rounding and a small decline in the participation rate on an unrounded basis. Although December remains a possibility, this report makes it more likely that the Fed pushes the first reduction in the pace of its asset purchases into 2014. While the uncertainty is considerable, we think that March is the most likely date under our economic forecast, and the assumption that the next set of fiscal deadlines proves less disruptive than the most recent set.

MAIN POINTS:

1. Payroll employment rose 148k in September (vs consensus 180k). While August employment growth was revised up?as has been the typical pattern in recent years?July employment growth was revised down, leaving the net revision to the prior two months only +9k. By industry, all of the slowdown in job growth relative to August was found in private service-providing industries, as employment in leisure and hospitality fell 13k (vs. +21k in August) and employment in health and education services rose only 14k (vs +61k in August). In contrast, construction employment rebounded (+20k), potentially due in part to more favorable weather in September, while government added 22k jobs, entirely due to the state and local sector. This morning's report leaves the 3-month trend in payroll job growth at +143k and the 12-month trend at +185k.

2. The unemployment rate declined by one-tenth to 7.2% to one decimal place (vs consensus 7.3%). On an unrounded basis, the decline was a smaller four basis points to 7.235%. Although employment grew by 133k according to the household survey, on a payroll-consistent basis?adjusting for definitional differences between the two surveys?employment declined 195k. While the labor force participation rate held constant to one decimal place at 63.2%, on an unrounded basis the rate continued to edge down slightly.

3. Average hourly earnings grew only 0.1% in September (vs consensus +0.2%), leaving the 12-month rate of increase at 2.1%. The average hourly workweek was unchanged at 34.5. The index of aggregate weekly hours?the product of workers and hours per worker?grew at an only-modest 1.1% annual rate during Q3.

4. Although December remains a possibility, this report makes it more likely that the Fed pushes the first reduction in the pace of its asset purchases into 2014. While the uncertainty is considerable, we think that March is the most likely date under our economic forecast, and the assumption that the next set of fiscal deadlines proves less disruptive than the most recent set. We continue to expect the first increase in the fed funds target rate in 2016 Q1.

5. With the employment report, manufacturing data, and sentiment surveys in hand, we start our September CAI at 2.6%, down from 3.1% in August.