The most important market moving economic release of the week will happen Friday morning when the U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics issues figures for the number of jobs the U.S. economy created in May.
The Street is anticipating a moderately positive tally of between 150,000 and 175,000 new positions, figures that should allay worries about the health of the U.S. economy should they materialize.
But one forecasting firm is sticking its neck out and claiming the consensus is way too optimistic. TrimTabs Investment Research projects that the economy added only 124,000 jobs in May, up slightly from the 116,000 created in April. TrimTabs isn't making a wild guess at the number. The research service bases its estimate on an analysis of the daily income tax deposits made to the U.S. Treasury from all salaried U.S. employees, figures that it says are historically more accurate than the initial job estimates made by the Bureau of Labour Statistics.
“Wall Street cheerleaders are ignoring the fact that high unemployment, a depressed housing market, deleveraging consumers, elevated fuel prices, and fallout from the worsening sovereign debt crisis in Europe are keeping the economy mired in slow-growth mode,” said Madeline Schnapp, director of macroeconomic research at TrimTabs, in a commentary accompanying the firm's estimate.
TrimTabs also says initial unemployment claims have been stuck around the 370,000 a week level for the past three weeks, suggesting that the labour market isn't improving.
The bad news on the economy may ultimately sway the Federal Reserve Board to open up the money spigots again, contends Ms. Schnapp.
“The lack of improvement in employment and economic growth does not surprise us,” she say. “Like a drug addict, the economy is dependent upon Federal Reserve monetary stimulus, which is ending June 30. Given the likelihood the economy will slow further without additional Fed intervention, we fully expect the Fed to announce another stimulus program in August.”