ADP: 158K vs. 200K Expected; ISM Mfg.: 51.2 vs. 54.0 Expected; ISM Non-Mfg.: 54.4 vs. 55.6 Expected; Vehicle Sales Up Only 3.4% Over a Year Ago
Sorry, AP and the rest of the establishment press, this is not impressive.
Private-sector employment increased by 158,000 from February to March, on a seasonally adjusted basis. (The estimated gain from January to February was revised up by 39,000, to 237,000).
Which means, pending revision, that March was only 2/3 of February.
The PMI™ registered 51.3 percent, a decrease of 2.9 percentage points from February’s reading of 54.2 percent, indicating expansion in manufacturing for the fourth consecutive month, but at a slower rate.
At least the orders-related numbers are above the 50% minimum for expansion. But each dropped bigtime (Backlog from 55.0 to 51.0; New Orders from 57.8 to 51.4).
“The NMI™ registered 54.4 percent in March, 1.6 percentage points lower than the 56 percent registered in February. This indicates continued growth at a slightly slower rate in the non-manufacturing sector.
The NMI report, while still heading down a bit, is the only one of the three discussed thus far which is arguably acceptable.
That’s three misses, two of them significant, vs. expectations.
Oh, and vehicle sales came in less than 4% above a year ago for the second straight month, while the press pretends that the car biz is booming, even though it’s still miles below where it was in the middle of the past decade.
But don’t worry.
All is well.
This isn’t a repeat of the past two springs and summers.