If the economy was waiting on numbers from the employment picture to give it some direction, it didn’t get it. You recall yesterday we spoke of the relative anemic number of jobs created over theGDP Estimate Revised past few years. Analysts had expected there to be somewhere near 176,000 new non-farm payroll jobs but the real number came in a little lower than anticipated at 151,000. One year ago, there were 149,000 new jobs created. The unemployment rate ticked up slightly from 4.9% to 5.0%, apparently due to an increase in those returning to their job search. This relatively tepid growth has been the staple since the middle of 2009. We haven’t lost jobs but we really haven’t created all that many either.

 

Average hourly earnings did fare better than expected rising 6 cents per hour to an annualized rate of 2.6 percent while the average work week increased to 34.4 hours. More people looking for work and slightly higher wages are two of the factors the Fed reviews when considering a rate cut. Job creation hit a 12 month high back in October of last year when there were 295,000 new jobs and triggered a positive run of job creation in November and December as well, which prompted the Fed to raise rates for the first time in a decade. Since then, there hasn’t been very much to prompt the Fed to make yet another interest rate move. And as we’re accustomed, Wall Street fell after the jobs report.

If the past is any indication and it usually is, we’re probably in another holding pattern as it relates to equities and securities. Private note financing secured by real estate development is still strong and provides solid, secure returns. The Dow has been stuck in the 18,000 range it seems like forever with occasional dips. It looks like Groundhog Day once again.