Stocks are lower and Mortgage Bonds are higher after the highly anticipated BLS Jobs Report showed 214k jobs created for October. This number was a bit lower than expectations of 235k, but consistent with what we have been averaging, and a solid report overall. The previous two month’s numbers were revised higher by a combined 31k, with an upward revision of 8k for September bringing that number from 248k to 256k, and an upward revision of 23k for August, bringing that number from 180k to 203k. Not that it matters now, but we believed August’s figure would come in over 200k. It’s amazing that the number was actually reported around 140k, and after 2 months of revisions, finally is over 200k. It just goes to show you how susceptible these numbers are to revision and how inaccurate they can be when first reported.
The labor force participation rate improved slightly from 62.7% to 62.8%. Hours worked edged up by 0.1 hours to 34.6 hours and hourly earnings increased by 3 cents to $24.57, up 2% on the year. The U6, which measures total unemployment, dropped from 11.8% to 11.5%. This is quite an improvement from last year’s 13.2%. The Unemployment Rate edged lower from 5.9% to 5.8% to the lowest level in almost 6.5 years.