NFP Preview: Eight major banks expectations for August jobs report

Today, the US jobs report for August is due out at 12:30 GMT and as we get closer to that time, here are the expectations forecast by the economists and researchers of eight major banks regarding the upcoming employment data. Most of the market specialists are expecting US NFP to post-reading in between +0.9 million and +2.1 million in August, while the consensus is +1.4 million reading. In addition, the unemployment rate is expected to fall to 9.8% from 10.2%.

Deutsche Bank

“Our US economists are looking for a +1.2M increase in Nonfarm payrolls, which should push the unemployment rate down to 9.7% (vs. 10.2% at present). If realised, that would bring the total gains in nonfarm payrolls since April to +10.5M, but even then it would still mean that less than half of the -22M jobs lost in March and April had been recovered, so this is likely to be a long journey yet.”


“We are looking for a more modest payrolls growth figure of 900,000K. This means we also see some upside for the unemployment rate, particularly with uncertainty over the Federal government unemployment benefit boost likely incentivising some people to start looking for work more actively. Remember that under the current rules you do not have to be looking for work to claim unemployment benefits, but you need to do so to be counted as officially unemployed. A rise in the participation rate would therefore likely mean the unemployment rate remains stable despite a rise in employment.”


“Payrolls will probably be up strongly by pre-COVID standards, but with the pace slowing again. Our +1.0M forecast allows for about a 240K rise in temporary census workers. It implies a decline of 11.9M since February, down from 22.2M through April but still consistent with a huge net increase in slack. The unemployment rate will probably stay historically high at 10%.”


“We are calling for a 1.75M increase in payrolls. The household survey is expected to show a similarly-sized progression in employment which would be consistent with a decrease in the unemployment rate to 9.7%, assuming yet another rise in the participation rate.”


“We expect another 2 million jobs to come back in August – a fourth straight job gain measured in the millions – prompting the unemployment rate to tick down to 10%. Still, the US will have recovered only half of the 22 million drop it endured in March and April”


“We look for a gain of around 1.3M jobs in August. The unemployment rate is also likely to fall further towards its GFC peak of 10%.” 


“We expect August’s gain to be relatively modest in relation to the past three increases and the amount of slack remaining in the labour market. Indeed, the 800K increase we project will be flattered by public sector hiring related to the delayed census, with the underlying rise in private sector jobs likely to be fairly tame.”


“We expect another month of solid job gains, with 2.1M positions added in August. Average hourly earnings may fall and the unemployment rate could decline modestly to 9.7% though reverse in Aug/Sep as participation rate rises.”


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