The 9k initial claims bounce to 220k
The 9k initial claims bounce to 220k in the second week of August reversed the 6k drop to 211k (was 209k) from 217k at the end of July. Claims are oscillating between the 49-year low of 193k in the April BLS survey week and the 230k late-April figures, following a rise in June but drop in July attributable to auto retooling, with little evidence of the growth slowdown feared in the markets. Claims are averaging 217k in August. Analysts saw a 212k cycle-low in July, and previously in September of 2018. Analysts saw averages of 222k in June and 217k in May. Next week's August BLS survey week reading should sit near recent readings of 216k in July, 217k in June and 212k in May. Analysts expect an August nonfarm payroll rise of 165k that matches the average year-to-date increase, and nearly matches the 164k July gain. Payrolls face ongoing upside risk from tight claims and lofty consumer confidence levels. But analysts face downside risk from restrained producer sentiment and a lean ADP path through the 156k July rise. The vehicle sales figures have fluctuated around the middle of the 16.5-17.5 M range since 2017, while vehicle assemblies have tracked a fairly flat path around an expected 11.1 M 2019 average.