First Look At March: ADP Says 27K Nonfarm Private Jobs Lost

The economic mover and shaker this week is Friday's employment report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This monthly report contains a wealth of data for economists, the most publicized being the month-over-month change in Total Nonfarm Employment (the PAYEMS series in the FRED repository).

Today we have the ADP March estimate of 27K nonfarm private employment jobs lost, a decrease over the ADP revised February figure of 179K.

The -27K estimate came in above the consensus of -150K for the ADP number.

The forecast for the forthcoming BLS report is for 163K private nonfarm jobs lost and the unemployment rate to rise to 3.8%. Their forecast for the March full nonfarm new jobs is (the PAYEMS number) -100K.

Here is an excerpt from today's ADP report press release:

“It is important to note that the ADP National Employment Report is based on the total number of payroll records for employees who were active on a company’s payroll through the 12th of the month. This is the same time period the Bureau of Labor and Statistics uses for their survey,” said Ahu Yildirmaz, co-head of the ADP Research Institute. “As such, the March NER does not fully reflect the most recent impact of COVID-19 on the employment situation, including unemployment claims reported on March 26, 2020.”

Here is a visualization of the two series over the previous twelve months.


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