US Non-Farm Payroll Data For Feb Beats Expectations

March 7, 2014 in Forex Fundamentals and News

The much-awaited non-farm payroll data for February has been released by the US Department of Labour.

Non-farm payrolls increased by 175K (seasonally adjusted) during February versus analysts’ expectations of 149K and the previous month’s reading of 129K.

Jobs added in the private sector were 162K, again beating market consensus of a 154K gain.

Impact of the data

The strong data led to a fall in the EURUSD from a high of 1.39137 to 1.38707. The pair is still within handshaking distance from a multi-year high.

The USDJPY pair, on the other hand, moved higher in response to the data, as shown in the chart below within the ellipse.

USD JPY after NFP

However, the unemployment percentage ticked up marginally to 6.7%. The labour participation rate was flat from last month at 63%, and so was the employment-population ratio at 58.8%.

The impact of the weather

Here is a relevant comment from Kathy Bostjancic, Director of Macroeconomic Analysis, The Conference Board, relating to the employment data released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

“The economy generated a gain of 175,000 jobs in February. Whether that is enough to dissipate uncertainty about where the economy is headed this year remains the big question. Even though the number of workers unable to report to work due to inclement weather increased strongly, and average weekly hours declined, the number of construction jobs continued to increase at a moderate rate. Going forward we see things improving as many of the underlying fundamentals of the economy have continued to improve … In sum, we look for a spring thaw to warm up the economic readings, including most notably employment and housing indicators.”

Up-to-date chart: NFP data

nfp-chart-tradingeconomics

 

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