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OPINION

Employment-Population Ratio All-Time High In Sight?

The opinions expressed by columnists are their own and do not necessarily represent the views of Townhall.com.
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AP Photo/Alan Diaz

It was another nice pop on Thursday into the close. Stocks that lose these days are taking extra punishment; hence the fact that the down volume was almost equal to the up volume on the New York Stock Exchange. However, the winner’s circle is building with close to 500 stocks, closing at new 52-week highs on the NYSE and the NASDAQ.

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NYSE

Advancers: 1,613

Decliners: 1,336

New Highs: 234

New Lows: 13

Up Volume: 1.43 billion

Down Volume: 1.33 billion

NASDAQ

Advancers: 1,812

Decliners: 1,395

New Highs: 252

New Lows: 17

Up Volume: 1.29 billion

Down Volume: 808.9 million

By the way, there is growing noise about the market being too enthusiastic, and the moves being too powerful to last. Check out the chart from Bespoke Extracts (BSPK). The historical norms of an average up day are +0.73% (the average down day, -0.73%); the DJIA +0.74%, S&P +0.67, and the NASDAQ +0.81%. 

Big Jobs Day

December Jobs Report

Estimate

November

Total employment

160,000

266,000

Private sector

153,000

254,000

Unemployment rate

3.5%

3.5%

Hourly wage increase

+0.3%

+0.2%

I think we’ll see a number north of 200,000; more importantly, I expect non-supervisory wages to continue to power ahead of the overall wage gains. Secondly, I want to see strong labor force gains to keep pushing up the employment-to-population ratio – the all-time high is within sight.

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