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Friday, August 7, 2009

Employment Report Surprises

  •  July Average Hourly Earnings m/m +0.2% vs +0.1% consensus, prior 0.0%; Y/Y +2.5% vs +2.5% consensus, prior +2.7%
  •  July Average Weekly Hours 33.1 vs 33.0 consensus
  •  July Unemployment Rate 9.4% vs 9.6% consensus
  • July Nonfarm Payrolls -247K vs -325K consensus, June revised to -443K from -467K
The closely watched and much-anticipated July employment report surprised to the upside across the board this morning, sending futures sharply higher ahead of the open.  While there seems to be a pattern of "less bad" numbers emerging in recent economic data which is certainly welcome news, it would be prudent to bear in mind that these are all relative numbers, and July still saw 247,000 jobs lost. 

Meanwhile, the whisperings of impending doom that tend to proliferate in the stock blogosphere seem to be amplifying somewhat, as tentative signs of an imminent pullback have emboldened battered bears a bit in recent days. A short-term correction would be constructive from most perspectives, but the market's impressive resilience and current bullish bias remains intact for now. Full moons, lunar eclipses, long-term trendlines, probabilities, and tea leaves are all well and good-- but until the market proves you right, they mean little.  
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