Survey gives a boost to US jobs market

 
Julian Harris
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AMERICA’S economic soft patch could be coming to an end according to surprisingly bullish jobs market data released yesterday.

The US private sector created 157,000 new jobs last month, smashing expectations of many economists.

Only 36,000 jobs were added in the previous month, according to the widely-watched ADP survey.

“There is a more than 90 per cent correlation over the last decade between ADP’s numbers and the official US Labour Department figures,” commented Aidan Manktelow from the Economist Intelligence Unit. The official employment figures are released today. “This kind of rate of job growth should see the unemployment rate decline,” he added.

Survey data for May has also shown a pick up for US prospects, Manktelow noted.

In a further boon for the ailing American jobs market, the number of new claims for unemployment benefit fell last week, official data revealed yesterday.

Jobless claims were down 14,000 to a seasonally adjusted 418,000, the Labor Department said.

In recent weeks, figures on jobless claims had disappointed US officials.

Combined with several more positive news releases from other corners of the world, some economists dared suggest that the global economy could be speeding up again.

“When combined with improving credit conditions in many countries and lower energy and commodity prices there is a growing potential for the second half of 2011 to outperform the first half of the year,” stated ING, in a note.

Across the Pacific, an upturn in Japanese machinery orders in May gave hope that corporate capital spending was rebuilding after the devastating earthquake in March.

Japan’s core machinery orders rose three per cent in May, following a 3.3 per cent drop in April.