In the U.S.A. we just got the ADP private employment figures and they were strong, up 217k, better than the 180k penciled in by economists. Keep in mind that this indicator has a shoddy track record of helping predict nonfarm payrolls (NFP) recently. In January for example, it was pointing to a near-190k increase and private nonfarm payrolls came in at just 50k. Over the past two months, we have seen ADP overestimate NFP by over 100k and we doubt that many economists will be making materials changes to NFP estimates (consensus estimates are sitting around 200k for private payrolls and 190k for total). We also received the Challenger job figures for February. While hiring rose nicely to a four-month high — though 85% of the tally was in one sector (retail) — job cut announcements jumped 20% YoY to the highest level in 11 months.
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