U.S. Outlook: An early spring for the jobs report
Spring in February: Is it global warming, stock market gains, Donald Trump, or a rekindling of animal spirits that helped push up the job growth numbers last month?
For more on these developments, see highlights of my report below, followed by a link to the full U.S. Outlook, delivered on March 10.Key observations:
- The increased momentum could have something to do with unusually mild winter weather playing havoc on the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ seasonal adjustment factors.
- Average hourly earnings growth has been accelerating as the economy rapidly absorbs remaining slack in the labor market.
- A March Fed rate hike is a near-certainty now with this strong payroll report under our belt.
- The report also raises the possibility of another rate hike as soon as the June meeting, though our baseline forecast is still for a September move.