Overseas Headlines – October 04, 2017


Companies Add Fewest U.S. Workers in Nearly a Year, ADP Says

Companies last month added the fewest number of workers in nearly a year, reflecting a hit to the U.S. job market from hurricanes Harvey and Irma, according to data released Wednesday from the ADP Research Institute in Roseland, New Jersey.


  • Private payrolls rose by 135k (matching est.), the smallest gain since October 2016, after revised 228k increase in August
  • Payrolls in goods-producing industries, which include builders and manufacturers, rose 48k
  • Service providers added 88k workers, also the fewest in 11 months
  • Hurricanes led to a decrease in net hiring at small companies, ADP says

Key Takeaways

The report is the latest to show economic data are being affected by the tropical storms. The swings may continue in coming months, following the pattern seen after major weather events such as superstorm Sandy in the Northeast in 2012. Excluding the impact of the weather, the labour market continues to make progress, helping to underpin consumer spending, the biggest part of the economy. At the same time, employers face the challenge of finding skilled workers as the job market is tightening. The ADP results provide a signal for the private payrolls tally in the September jobs report due from the Labour Department on Friday.




China September data to show steady growth ahead of key Communist Party congress

Chinese data in coming weeks is expected to deliver exactly what its leaders want to hear ahead of a highly sensitive Communist Party Congress – the country’s economic growth remains robust and resilient even as they work to get debt risks under control. The twice-a-decade party congress that kicks off on Oct. 18 is expected to see President Xi Jinping strengthen his grip in a leadership reshuffle, and will set the political and economic policy tone for China for the next five years. So far this year, the world’s second-biggest economy has held up better than expected despite views that a clampdown on riskier types of financing and a flurry of measures to cool heated housing prices will drag on activity. But many economists still contend growth will fade in coming months under the weight of higher borrowing costs, property curbs and the government-mandated shutdown of some highly polluting factories to reduce winter air pollution. The boost from heavy government stimulus — Beijing’s infrastructure spending spree has helped fuel a year-long construction boom — will also begin to ebb, skeptics argue.




Strong chances of Brexit no deal, but UK government may collapse: Scottish minister

Scotland’s Brexit minister believes there is a “pretty strong” chance Britain will leave the European Union with no deal, but that the UK government could collapse before then. Michael Russell said the devolved pro-independence Scottish administration is trying to prepare for Brexit, despite Scots having voted against it, but possible outcomes are “legion”. “I think the chances (Brexit) happens without an agreement are still pretty strong, that there will a crashing out,” Russell, who is heading Scottish Brexit talks with the UK government, told Reuters. “It is also distinctly possible (…) that the government will fall and there will be another election or another government will come in,” he added. British Prime Minister Theresa May is running a minority Conservative government, kept in power by a Northern Irish Protestant party. Russel said it was unclear what any new government might do. “Will it start negotiations afresh, what will be its mandate, what will it be negotiating for?” Russell said, describing his frustration with the process and its uncertainty.