"August will likely see a smaller gain in jobs," predicts Yohay Elam who points to a 120.000 increase in employment. Valeria Bednarik, who presents the most gloomy outlook of all the analysts polled for the forecast report, indicates 90.000 - 120.000 NFP growth, while the most optimist Illian Yotov expects a not much higher number of 150.000.
As far as the unemployment rate is concerned, Adam Narczewski believes that "its decline in the last couple of months had more to do with the expiration of the unemployment benefits programs in various states rather than an increase in the NFP," and suggests that it should oscillate between 8.0%-8.3% in the nearest future. Other experts see a slight decline to 8.2% in August.
Valeria Bednarik reminds that "the employment sector is crucial for the US economic recovery," and in her opinion another month of sluggish NFP growth will force the Fed to step in.
The US Department of Labor will release NFP numbers on September 7 at 12:30 GMT.
Adam Narczewski - Financial Analyst at X-Trade Brokers, XTB:"The last reading of the NFP really surprised (positively) but I would not expect such numbers for August although still the increase in jobs should be noticeable. I expect a reading in the 120-140K range. As far as the unemployment rate goes, its decline in the last couple of months had more to do with the expiration of the unemployment benefits programs (extended to 99 weeks) in various states (financed by the federal government, for unemployed in certain States meeting the criteria) rather than an increase in the NFP. When unemployment benefits expired, unemployed would either accept the job offer the previously refused since it seemed unattractive to them or they would quit searching for a job (thus leaving the labor force and by that “decreasing” unemployment). Since most programs already expired, the unemployment rate should remain in the 8,0%-8,3%. In order for it to drop below the 8%, we would need to see a series of months with NFP readings above 150K."
Yohay Elam - Analyst at Forex Crunch:"August will likely see a smaller gain in jobs. While housing is certainly showing positive signs, manufacturing remains weak and the economy in general isn't going anywhere fast. A gain of around 120K can be expected. The rise in the unemployment rate seen last month was actually quite minor. A revision of July's data and/or a drop in August to 8.2% is likely now. Another gain of 150K or more will likely boost the dollar, while a gain of less than 100K will weaken it on new speculation for QE3."
Ilian Yotov - FX Strategist and Founder at AllThingsForex:"With the U.S. jobless claims establishing a trend of improvement in recent weeks and the economy adding more jobs than expected in July, it would be crucial for this trend to continue in order to steer the Fed away from announcing additional quantitative easing at its September meeting. The consensus forecasts point to another month of decent job creation with the U.S. economy expected to add 150K jobs in August, compared with 163K in July, while the unemployment rate inches lower to 8.2% from 8.3%. The USD should be able to benefit from a more upbeat employment data. On the other hand, a disappointing Non-Farm Payrolls report would cement the market's expectations that QE3 is just around the corner, with the odds of a September 13 announcement increasing significantly."
Bill Hubard - Chief Economist at Markets.com:"Looking ahead to the key run of initial data for August that will be released after Labor Day ahead of the FOMC meeting, a worse-than-expected jobless claims report pointed to a more sluggish employment report than we had been thinking coming into the week. We forecast a 100,000 gain in nonfarm payrolls in August after the 163,000 gain in July. We think that the July result was boosted by about 30,000 by temporary seasonal adjustment issues in manufacturing and restaurants, in particular, and we expect this to be unwound in August. So on an underlying basis, we see job growth in both July and August near +130,000. That’s a pace only about in line with growth in the labour force and not consistent with any sustained decline in the unemployment rate. Our preliminary forecast for the August ISM is a slight decline to a third straight marginally sub-50 reading of 49.5."
Steve Ruffley - Analyst at Tradermaker.com:"After last months positive Non Farm payrolls headline figure many are calling on the recovery in employment to continue this month. However, we advocate being wary. The headline figure did beat expectations and help to give stocks a boost but the data supporting the figure, notably the unemployment rate ticked in the wrong direction or stagnated. The jobs market continues to lag behind the real recovery and without further stimulus by the Bernanke bunch we cannot see how it will miraculously improve. Bernanke himself has always advocated a sluggish employment recovery, however after a few months of poor data you may see a reasonable employment figure creep through again.
This month we expect the headline payrolls figure to come in somewhere around 120K, the unemployment rate to remain around 8.2%-8.3% and private payrolls (the driving force given government cuts)to continue to tick forward."
Talal Abdullah - Financial Analyst at ICN.com:"Focus remains on the world`s largest economy and its ailing labor market as long as unemployment stays elevated. Negative jobs figures will further speculations the Federal Reserve will move ahead with additional monetary easing to help the world`s largest economy after the Federal Reserve`s meeting minutes provided a slight of relief for markets.
July`s employment situation was not dramatic but the payrolls job gain improved from June; however the unemployment rate headed the wrong way. For August, I believe that U.S. economy probably added another mediocre 100,000 – 140,000 jobs during August, compared to 163,000 jobs added back in July, while it’s likely that the unemployment remained steady at 8.3% after rising in July from 8.2%. Markets are worried about the jobs outlook after Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke said the labor market is still 'far from normal'."