Economy

Brace Yourself: August Jobs Report Due Shortly

Job seekers in Hollywood, Fla., on Sept. 1

Job seekers at the Helping Hands Resource Group in Hollywood, Fla., on Wednesday. Lynne Sladky/Associated Press hide caption

itoggle caption Lynne Sladky/Associated Press

Along with Hurricane Earl and the latest bits of news from the Mideast peace talks, this morning's August unemployment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics is sure to be an attention-getter. After all, the still-soft economy is atop the list of things most Americans are most worried about.

A few things to know as we prepare for the news:

— The report is set for release at 8:30 a.m. ET. BLS will post it here. We'll pass along the news as quickly as possible, and our friends at Planet Money will be on top of things as well.

— As NPR's Yuki Noguchi reported on Morning Edition, there's a good chance BLS will say the jobless rate (9.5% in July) ticked up a bit. And, "economists anticipate that, once again, August will post a loss in government jobs, including temporary Census jobs. But the biggest cause for concern is that this month could show the weakest business hiring in months. Although the economy is technically a year into a recovery, that is not yet showing up in the jobs numbers."

Yuki Noguchi Looks Ahead To Today's Jobs Report

Reuters says its latest survey of economists shows they're expecting BLS will say that "nonfarm payrolls fell 100,000 after declining 131,000 in July. ... Private payrolls, a better barometer of the labor market's underlying health, are seen rising only 41,000, well below the 71,000 jobs added in July."

Bloomberg News writes that "employment probably cooled in August as slower economic growth caused some U.S. companies to lose confidence the recovery will be sustained, economists said. ... Private payrolls that exclude government agencies rose by 40,000 after a 71,000 July gain, and the jobless rate climbed to 9.6 percent, according to the median estimate of economists surveyed by Bloomberg News. Total employment may have dropped for a third consecutive month as census workers were let go."

One other things to bear in mind: The stock market's reaction could be affected by the fact that this is the Friday before Labor Day — and a long weekend for many. If the volume of trading is "lighter" than usual because of that, there could be a bit more volatility.

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