Cookin’ the books? … 2 numbers to watch when the BLS reports tomorrow.

Loyal readers know that I’m a bit skeptical re: the employment numbers that the BLS has been spitting out in recent months.

Two reasons: (1) Unemployment rates are diverging from the Gallup daily surveys, and (2) Seasonal adjustment factors are boosting the employment numbers.

First, the Gallup relationship …

Historically, Gallup’s mid-month unemployment rate has tracked closely to the BLS end-of-month rate.

Not so in February … Gallup reported 8% … BLS reported 8.2%.


Gallup’s mid-month rate for March was 8.9%.

Let’s see what the BLS says tomorrow.


* * * * *

The 2nd number to watch is the the seasonal adjustment adder.

For the prior10 years, the BLS has seasonally adjusted February employment numbers upward by 1.1423%.

Last month, they upped the raw numbers by 1.1688%.

That’s a big difference when floated into the unemployment rate calculation.

The prior 10 year adjustment factor for March has been .6209 %.

If the seasonal adder is higher than that tomorrow … be suspicious.


* * * * *

My bet: the unemployment rate will magically hang at 8.3% … .6% below the Gallup number.

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