The February employment data is out, and the number is good. Using the BLS Household Survey data (not seasonally adjusted) we saw a 1.3% climb in employment from one year ago. This is a reasonable number; not great, but good enough to indicate that the economy is still expanding in terms of jobs. Private sector employment (derived from a different BLS payroll survey) was up 1.9% year-over-year. Government employment (also derived from the payroll survey) was down 0.2% year-over-year.
The data is encouraging as is the uptick on the most recent ITR Leading Indicator trend and the rates-of-change we derive from the University of Michigan’s Consumer Expectations survey. Throw in a resurgent S&P500 in February and the signals are telling us that we should all look for the economy to slow down, but not break down, in 2014.