Friday’s US non-farm payroll numbers came in massively under expectation at 266,000 jobs added versus a projected 1m. The unemployment rate rose to 6.1 per cent versus 6 per cent. And average hourly earnings were up 0.7 per cent month on month versus an expected zero consensus. Since nobody in the analyst community saw the mega miss coming we thought we’d check in with what the latest commentary from our inbox is saying.

First it’s over to James Knightley, chief international economist at ING, whose assessment is basically humph:

Though Knightley does pick up on the important trend that employers are struggling to find workers:

This, he tells us, means there is huge demand for workers, but job gains will be held back in the next few months because of a lack of supply.

The reason for that is two fold in Knightley’s opinion: childcare issues and benefit incentives.

This ties in with anecdotal reports from the retail and restaurant industry that they are struggling to find workers or being forced to offer cash bonuses or wage increases to get people back to work.

Jim O’Sullivan and team at TD Securities concur (our emphasis):

George Saravelos at Deutsche Bank, meanwhile notes that Friday’s numbers highlight the degree to which the US is clocking in the weakest post-pandemic performance in the developed world:

And here’s the context:

The hedge fund investor otherwise known as Diogenes, meanwhile, offers this food for thought via Twitter:

It’s a fair point! And one FT Alphaville has speculated about in our Clubhouse sessions before. At what point do returns from crypto and day-trading begin to compensate for the need for a job altogether?