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One Forecaster Turns Bullish on Jobs

A worker stacks lumber at the Windsor Mill facility in Willits, Calif., on Aug. 26

Photograph by David Paul Morris/Bloomberg

A worker stacks lumber at the Windsor Mill facility in Willits, Calif., on Aug. 26

On the eve of Friday’s employment report, economists at UBS (UBS) raised their estimate of August job creation, citing “strong labor indicators.”

The UBS team of economists predicts that the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics will announce the creation of 210,000 jobs in August. The median forecast of economists surveyed by Bloomberg in advance of the report was a payroll increase of 180,000. UBS had been below the median at 170,000.

Factors in UBS’s bullishness:

• A jump in the Institute for Supply Management’s August index of economic activity outside manufacturing.

• Employment indexes from the Institute for Supply Management that are “certainly consistent with a strengthening trend.”

• Good news from the National Federation of Independent Business. Its August survey found the biggest share since January 2007 of businesses planning to increase employment.

The ADP (ADP) Research Institute said today that private-sector employers added 176,000 jobs in August, which was slightly belowthe prediction of economists surveyed by Bloomberg. But that didn’t frighten off the UBS economics team of Maury Harris, Drew Matus, Samuel Coffin, and Kevin Cummins. They said ADP’s “track record for predicting the BLS private payroll estimate is unproven.”

Coy is Bloomberg Businessweek's economics editor. His Twitter handle is @petercoy.

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