Friday, August 6, 2010

Friday's employment numbers


Seems logical that the market tanked this morning on the disappointment on the non farm payroll numbers.  Increase of 71,000 jobs in the private sector, but 143,000 reduction in temporary and census workers.  Overall decrease of 131,000 in jobs.   Not sure how the math is working here, but I am sure there are other numbers/catagories involved.

Equity markets started off with a big drop, but looks to be coming back.  US Dollar slipping against major currencies. 

I think we can say the 71K increase in private sector is good.  These are the jobs that matter.   Is there a time lag between census workers being laid off and getting new jobs?   Maybe.   Too early to say.

Lets see how the markets progress throughout the day after the initial shock subsides.    Maybe the Tradebots will pull us through ;)

A couple points from the last  couple days.   Manufacturing increasing,  Jobs decreasing.   Does this imply more efficiency in our manufacturing capabilities?   This is good if true.   But where are the new jobs going to come from?

6:00PM update

Looks like the market didn't freak out too much over the numbers and recovered to a 21 point loss after being down 150 earlier in the day.   Interesting comment by Alan Siani which seems to reinforce some of the things mentioned in earlier posts.

'For now, companies appear nervous about expanding their payrolls. “Businesses just don’t want to hire,” said Allen Sinai, chief global economist at Decision Economics. “Workers are too costly and it’s very easy to substitute technology for labor.” He added that with corporate earnings rising partly on the back of cost-cutting, employers are reluctant to give up profits. “So while corporate earnings were spectacular,” Mr. Sinai said, “the job market just stinks.” '

Is technology starting to take over for people?  Investment in automation seem to be leading to higher corporate profits with reduced labor requirements.   Where are the investment opportunities with this trend (if it can be called a trend)?   Computer Software, Hardware, Manufacturing automation technology, other?

Washington Post article this am.

Followup article later in the day from the New York Times.

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