Fritz Pfister

By the time this column is published you will know the number of non-farm payroll jobs gained or lost in April according to the BLS. On Wednesday ADP projected 119,000 gained. The main stream media went immediately into their ‘unexpected’ mode.

OMG these numbers were ‘unexpectedly’ weak. For the main stream nim-Bobs it’s panic time. What will this do to Obama’s reelection chances? The editorial rooms will be a bee hive of activity attempting to figure out how they can spin these pitiful numbers to look good. But there may be help on the way.

Here’s my theory. The abysmal ADP number will be used as the benchmark. The BLS will report a higher number, just guessing, between 160,000 and 175,000. Then comparing the higher BLS number, whatever it may be, to March’s pathetic 120,000 and ADP’s 119,000, we’ll once again be headed in the right direction, and all will be good in Obamaville as reported by the nim-Bobs. But not so good where people live.

In spite of Obama’s anti-business agenda, manufacturing has been the foundation to the jobs floor but that could be cracking. Too bad we don’t have any foundation specialists in the Czar regime, they’re off worrying about contraceptives, student loans, wars on women, and reminding everyone Osama Bin Laden is still dead.

Something strange is going on in the world of manufacturing. On Monday the Chicago manufacturing index fell to the lowest level since November of 2009, then Dallas manufacturing went negative for the first time this year and to its lowest level in seven months.

Then Tuesday the Institute for Supply Management reported April manufacturing ‘unexpectedly’ rose to 54.8 to the highest level since June. Somebody ought to tell Chicago and Dallas the good news. The euphoria amongst the nim-Bobs was deflated the next day when factory orders reportedly fell to their lowest levels in three years.

Are we clear now on the dynamics of the manufacturing sector, and how that will lead to job creation? For jobs are the key to everything, especially housing.

The Census Bureau reported this week that the home ownership rate fell to the lowest level in fifteen years at 65.4. Ironically the labor force participation rate was reported at a three decade low of 63.7 in January then rose rapidly to 63.8 by March.  Could it be possible that the rate of homeownership be tied to the labor force participation rate? You know, people with jobs who can actually afford to buy a home?

Fritz Pfister

Fritz began his Real Estate career in 1987 and has been with RE/MAX since 1989.