US non-farm payrolls lower than expected

US payroll data fell short of expectations in August, rising by 151,000 as opposed to the 180,000 expected and down from 275,000 the month before. The unemployment rate was unchanged at 4.9 per cent, slightly higher than the 4.8 per cent expected. The report came at a critical time, as the Federal Reserve are keeping a close eye on the jobs numbers ahead of their next meeting at the end of this month. This mild data suggests that the Fed is less likely to raise interest rates and led to a sharp fall in the dollar and short-term government bond yields. However they did recover some ground, with analysts optimistic that economic growth in the US is continuing, which could be sufficient to push the Fed to raise rates in December.