Employment can be a lagging indicator, so this forecast of Friday’s employment number could be verifying the rest of the weakness that’s been reported:
Private businesses in the US hired 27 thousand workers in May, less than an expected 180 thousand and compared to April’s 271 thousand increase. It was the smallest payroll increase since March 2010, as the service-providing sector added 71 thousand jobs while the goods-producing sector shed 43 thousand jobs, mainly in the construction sector.
ADP sees private payrolls coming in at a very weak and far lower-than-expected 27,000 in Friday’s employment report for May. Forecasters expected today’s ADP estimate to come in at a solid 175,000. The consensus for Friday’s private payrolls going into today’s ADP report was also for a 175,000 increase. Private payrolls rose 236,000 in April. ADP’s forecast, one that if proves accurate would intensify expectations for a Federal Reserve rate cut, is likely to trigger at least some downward revisions among forecasters for Friday’s results.
Purchase apps down even with lower rates:
Rates moved sharply lower in the May 31 week which gave a boost to refinancing applications, up 6.0 percent in the week, but not purchase applications which fell 2.0 percent. Year-on-year, the purchase index is suddenly showing weakness with only a 0.5 percent gain. Conventional 30-year mortgages fell 10 basis points in the week to 4.23 percent. The housing sector has been moving higher this year though improvement has been uneven.
May vehicle sales up a bit from April, but as the chart shows they are nonetheless working their way lower: