Today’s Comment is devoted to this afternoon’s US labor market report. In particular, we’re trying to give an estimate of sorts when the US will return to full employment and what it will mean for Fed policy. But before we start, we briefly want to go over consensus expectations for today’s labor market data. As we all know, the pace of payrolls gains has been slowing. Organically because most furloughed workers who were able to have returned to their old jobs, but also because of the new pandemic wave and the inevitable slowing of the recovery in Q4. For November Bloomberg consensus expects headline payrolls to have increased by 476k, down from a 638k increase in October and clearly below the millions of jobs that returned in the May-August period. Unemployment should fall only marginally to 6.8%.
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