Hiring Likely Surged in June, Before Reopening Reversals. What to Watch in Thursday’s Jobs Report.

Hiring Likely Surged in June, Before Reopening Reversals. What to Watch in Thursday’s Jobs Report.

The labor-market recovery that unexpectedly began in May likely gained steam in June as more businesses around the country reopened and consumers ventured back out to shops, restaurants and other establishments. Still, the June jobs report—to be released Thursday because Friday is the observance of Independence Day—will show that tens of millions of Americans remain unemployed. What’s more, the June employment picture is already somewhat stale given the surge in coronavirus cases that picked up during the month. The Labor Department conducts its survey during the week of the month that contains the 12th, meaning reopening reversals and delays by some companies and local governments won’t fully be reflected in Thursday’s data. Here’s a rundown of what investors should look for on Thursday. Economists expect several more million people were hired in June after 2.5 million jobs came back in May. Those polled by FactSet predict an increase of 3 million. Some expect more. Lydia Boussour, an economist at Oxford Economics, predicts an increase in nonfarm payrolls of 4.3 million based on her firm’s weekly Recovery Tracker. Since May, hourly employment and staffing data have modestly improved. And while layoffs have remained elevated and the steady decline stalled in the latest week, what matters for the sake of forecasting June payrolls is where claims were during the survey’s reference week. Roughly 7 million individuals filed for unemployment benefits between the May and June payroll survey reference weeks, nearly twice as low as the prior month ...
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