After a stronger than anticipated report from the bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), mortgage bonds are surprisingly holding their ground in early morning trading. While the market was anticipating 160,000 new hires in the month of January, the actual report showed that 225,000 new jobs were created. In addition, there were an additional 7,000 added to revisions for the previous two months. This brings the three month job growth average to 211,000, which is an upward trend from where things have been for a number of months.
The Unemployment Rate ticked a bit higher in this morning’s report, moving from 3.5% to 3.6%. Since this report comes from a telephone survey, it often contradicts the headline BLS report which is derived from data submitted by select companies that tracks the number of employees and wages paid out. According to the phone survey, the US economy lost 89,000 jobs, which is a long fall from the Headline report.
We will generally see an increased level of volatility on Job report days. I wouldn’t be surprised to see bonds test both the floor and ceiling at some point throughout the day. Therefore, we should be on guard.
We will maintain a locking bias.