Trump’s first month backs up ‘job creator’ claims
President Trump’s first full month in office has seen jobs growth rise at an above average pace. February saw gains in construction and manufacturing, as the labour market showed strong signs of improvement after a similarly positive January. Wage growth picked up, and 235,000 new jobs were added during the month. In January, 238,000 new jobs were added.
Ryan Sweet, an economist with Moody Analytics Inc., said:
“We’re getting closer and closer to full employment. Wages had been the one sore spot in the labour market data, and I think that’s coming through here. With inflation accelerating I think we’re going to start to see even stronger wage growth down the road.” He added that a rates hike from the Fed this week is “pretty much a slam dunk.”
Taking to Twitter to air his views, Trump re-tweeted a Drudge Report headline: “GREAT AGAIN: +235,000”.
While Mr. Trump’s Twitter-feed adventures have occasionally come under fire from observers for being “un-presidential”, there is a case to be made that his bravado is justified this time round. The pick up in the jobs report coincides with an upswing in economic sentiment thanks to his election victory last November – although a number of pundits would prefer we thanked nice weather than the current administration.
This is not, of course, an entirely spurious assertion. Last month was the second warmest February since records began, and construction – one of the sectors where job growth really outperformed – is reliant on clear skies. According to the Labour Department, an average February sees 311,000 people unable to work due to poor weather. Last month, it was just 157,000.
February saw Trump trump the experts again: a median forecast from Bloomberg economists predicted 200,000 would be added in February. But, the new president will have to continue beating expectations if he wants to deliver on his promise of 25 million jobs over 10 years. This gain would require an additional 208,000 jobs per month.
That might seem unachievable, but the entire Trump narrative has turned what is and isn’t achievable on its head: a year ago, how many of us really thought he’d be sitting in The White House?
The opinions in this article do not reflect those of Dominion Fund Management Limited, and in the instance of any forward-looking statements, these should not be construed as advice.
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