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Continued solid US employment growth?

March 9, 2012

Before this week draws to a close, markets are in anticipation of the monthly US labor market report scheduled for release at 2.30 pm CET.

Economists expect continued solid employment gains in February. The consensus calls for 210,000 non farm payrolls or 243,000 when considering only the private sector of the economy. At the beginning of the year, employment growth was 243,000 and 257,000, respectively. The unemployment rate, calculated on basis of separate survey results, is forecast to remain at 8.3% in February unchanged compared to the previous month. Weekly labor market data showed an increase in first time jobless claims by a stronger than expected 8,000 to an annual rate of 362,000 (forecast 352,000) in the week to February