US Fed’s Plosser Says Jobs Affected By Cold Weather

Severe winter weather likely affected U.S. jobs growth in February, a top Federal Reserve official said on Monday, the latest U.S. central banker to suggest a bit of weakness in the labor market is only temporary.

In a speech at the Bank of France, Philadelphia Fed President Charles Plosser pointed to U.S. payroll gains in December, January and February. “All three of these numbers most likely reflected in part the effect of the unusually severe winter weather,” he said according to prepared remarks.

A government report on Friday showed U.S. employers added 175,000 jobs last month after creating 129,000 new positions in January. The unemployment rate, meanwhile, rose to 6.7 percent from a five-year low of 6.6 percent as Americans flooded into the labor market to search for work.

Plosser is a long-time critic of the Fed’s aggressive bond-buying program, which is meant to spur hiring and economic growth, but which policymakers have trimmed in measured steps despite some weak growth in jobs, manufacturing and retail sales in the world’s largest economy so far this year.

Aside from the reference to the jobs report, Plosser’s speech was largely the same as a speech he gave in London on March 6.

via Reuters

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Alfonso Esparza

Alfonso Esparza

Senior Currency Analyst at Market Pulse
Alfonso Esparza specializes in macro forex strategies for North American and major currency pairs. Upon joining OANDA in 2007, Alfonso Esparza established the MarketPulseFX blog and he has since written extensively about central banks and global economic and political trends. Alfonso has also worked as a professional currency trader focused on North America and emerging markets. He has been published by The MarketWatch, Reuters, the Wall Street Journal and The Globe and Mail, and he also appears regularly as a guest commentator on networks including Bloomberg and BNN. He holds a finance degree from the Monterrey Institute of Technology and Higher Education (ITESM) and an MBA with a specialization on financial engineering and marketing from the University of Toronto.
Alfonso Esparza