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Gaming the Employment Report

My predictive model includes several inputs -- let's take a look.

This commentary was originally posted on RealMoney by Jeff Miller.

Employment Report Preview

11/6/2008 3:23 p.m. EST

Each month I prepare for the payroll employment report by considering other economic data from the same time period. My model includes Michigan sentiment, initial claims (using the four-week average ending in the same week as the payroll survey), and the ISM report. This is not a "forecast" as much as a look at several concurrent economic indicators.

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One reason this little model fits as well as it does is by picking up three different angles related to employment. The jobless claims series is obviously relevant. The consumer sentiment measured in the superb University of Michigan method has a continuing portion of the panel. Employment is naturally on the minds of many. The ISM approach also has an employment component.

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