Private payrolls in the US increased 114,000 in September, slightly below an upwardly revised gain of 122,000 in the previous month, the Labor Department reports. The latest round of hiring is strong enough to minimize fears that a recession is imminent, but still weak enough to raise questions about where the economy’s headed in the fourth quarter.
It’s the number-one economic question these days, but the answer will remain elusive for several weeks at least, perhaps several months. What we do know is that output has slowed recently and appears to be dipping further. Determining when, exactly, the economy begins to contract can only be known with certainty in hindsight. For now, it’s clear that the risk of a new downturn has increased, but the slow-growth scenario remains the likely path until further notice. What might push the trend over to the dark side? Let’s consider a short list of indicators for perspective.
Moderately stronger job growth expected for today’s Sep payrolls data: Reuters
Fed Vice Chairman Clarida: labor market is “very healthy”: Reuters
Federal Reserve under growing pressure for another rate cut: Bloomberg
Global growth slowed in Sep, close to stagnation, via PMI data: IHS Markit
Factory orders in US fell slightly in August: Reuters
US jobless claims rise but continue to reflect low pace of layoffs: MW
Job cuts in US fell 22% in September vs. previous month: CG&C
US Services PMI reflects virtually stagnant business activity in Sep: IHS Markit
ISM’s US services sector weakened in Sep, falling to 3-year low: ISM