Friday’s employment data was better than expected, as the BLS would have us believe that 257,000 jobs were created (expectations were for 238,000), and the revisions were also higher. In other words, the employment data could hardly look better, according to the government, which of course does not jibe with the layoffs that have been announced, both in the oil patch and elsewhere. It is almost impossible to believe that a sector of the economy could be strong enough to make up for energy related layoffs.
Just What the Doctoring Ordered
Whether or not the data is bogus, people chose to regard it as exactly what the stock market needed, as the indices were modestly higher through midday, despite a beating in the bond market (more about that below). However, the market rally ran out of steam in the afternoon and the indices ended the day with a modest loss of about 0.5%. Thus, the game of chicken that the stock market has been playing against the Fed — and winning (for now) — continues. (For what it’s worth, I decided to take a shot and shorted some Intel into today’s ramp job.)
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