US: ADP Employment Report

Wed Aug 03 07:15:00 CDT 2016

Consensus Consensus Range Actual Previous
ADP employment 165,000 160,000 to 185,000 179,000 172,000

Growth in the labor market held firm and steady in July, based on ADP's 179,000 estimate for private payrolls in Friday's employment report. The result is near the top-end of the Econoday forecast range and is slightly higher than ADP's estimate for June. And June proved very strong in the government data, up 265,000. Next indication on Friday's data will be the ISM's non-manufacturing employment index to be released later this morning at 10:00 a.m. ET.

Market Consensus Before Announcement
ADP employment has had many more hits than misses this year including June when the report called for a 173,000 rise in private payrolls, a call that looks small compared to the outsized 265,000 actual outcome but what was well over expectations at the time. ADP's estimate for July is expected to come in at 165,000 which would point to another positive month for the July employment report.

The ADP national employment report is computed from a subset of ADP records that represent approximately 400,000 U.S. business clients and approximately 23 million U.S. employees working in all private industrial sectors. ADP contracted with Moody's Analytics to compute a monthly report that would ultimately help to predict monthly nonfarm payrolls from the Bureau of Labor Statistic's employment situation. The ADP report only covers private (excluding government) payrolls.

Market players have become accustomed to the excitement on employment Friday and realize the rich detail of the monthly employment situation can help set the tone for the entire month. While economists have certainly improved their nonfarm payroll forecasts over the years, it is not unusual to see surprises on employment Friday. To that end, the new ADP national employment report can help improve the payroll forecast by providing information in advance of the employment report.

The employment statistics also provide insight on wage trends, and wage inflation is high on the list of enemies for the Federal Reserve. Fed officials constantly monitor this data watching for even the smallest signs of potential inflationary pressures, even when economic conditions are soggy. If inflation is under control, it is easier for the Fed to maintain a more accommodative monetary policy. If inflation is a problem, the Fed is limited in providing economic stimulus. The ADP national employment report does not yet have wage information, but their goal is to provide wage information, along with industry and regional information as well.

By tracking jobs, investors can sense the degree of tightness in the job market. If wage inflation threatens, it's a good bet that interest rates will rise; bond and stock prices will fall. No doubt that the only investors in a good mood will be the ones who watched the employment report and adjusted their portfolios to anticipate these events. In contrast, when job growth is slow or negative, then interest rates are likely to decline - boosting up bond and stock prices in the process.