Search ForexCrunch

US Non-Farm Payrolls rose 155K in December. Early expectations stood on around 150K after last month’s 146K (before revisions). The unemployment rate stands on 7.8% after 7.7% in November. Update:  November  was revised to 7.8%, so actually there was no change. Most of the other indicators remained unchanged. All in all, the lack of big changes and surprises allows the markets to take profits on dollar longs.

EUR/USD found support at 1.30 before the release, and USD/JPY continued its vertical move, trading at 88.30, a 30 month high. The dollar is now selling off initially, as the whisper numbers were a bit higher, but this is mostly a cover of USD longs.

The details:

  • Non-Farm Payrolls: 155K
  • Participation Rate: 63.6% – unchanged
  • Unemployment Rate: 7.8%, actually unchanged.
  • Revisions: October was revised from 138K to 137K, November from 146K to 161K. The total is only +14K. Past months saw much bigger revisions.
  • Private Sector NFP: 168K (ADP showed a strong +215K).
  • Real Unemployment Rate (U-6): unchanged at 14.4%.
  • Employment to population ratio: 58.6%, unchanged.
  • Average Hourly Earnings: +0.3%, above the 0.2% expected.

Expectations for the Non-Farm Payrolls rose after a good manufacturing PMI figure (including a strong employment component), as well as big gain in private sector jobs according to ADP. The ISM Non-Manufacturing  PMI (which usually provides a big hint) will be published at 15:00.

The northern neighbor had a surprisingly strong report, for a second month in a row: Canada reported +40K and another drop in the unemployment rate to 7.1%.

The previous report report for November surprised to the upside with +146K, as expectations were low due to the Sandy super-storm. The number was taken with a grain of salt and revisions were expected. The drop in the unemployment rate to 7.7% was due to a drop in the participation rate, and was also dismissed.

Further reading:  5 Most Predictable Currency Pairs – Q1 2013