Shutdown May Delay Release Of September Jobs Report
Ordinarily, Friday morning at 8:30am would see the release of the September Jobs Report. However, with the government shutdown there’s a good chance we won’t see a report at all:
The government shutdown that started Tuesday could prevent the Bureau of Labor Statistics from releasing its monthly employment report, which serves as the basis of an economic and political obsession known as “jobs day” among White House officials.
BLS had planned to reveal the September numbers on Friday, but the agency is down to just three workers due to a lapse on congressional appropriations that allows only “essential” operations to continue.
Labor Department spokesman Stephen Barr did not respond on Tuesday to questions about whether the BLS will release the national jobs numbers this month.
BLS Commissioner Erica Groshen said in a memo last week that the White House Office of Management and Budget could authorize her agency to put out high-priority economic data during the shutdown.
The monthly jobs reports, which include 24 tables of economic data, can have an impact on markets and politics, as they influence Federal Reserve policies, investor decisions and even the president’s approval rating.
The report would be particularly important this month as the Federal Reserve tries to make a decision on when to pull back on its multibillion-dollar economic stimulus program that involves bond purchases to create downward pressure on interest rates.
As of now, there’s still no word about what the BLS plans to do on Friday, or whether they’re even close to having the report ready at this point. Additionally, given the reduced labor force there one has to wonder how reliable a report will be if they do manage to release something.