The September jobs report this morning was generally positive. 136,000 jobs were created which missed estimates by a narrow margin, but the unemployment rate came in at 3.5% which was the lowest reading since 1969 and better than estimates calling for a 3.7% reading. Wage growth was tepid at a 2.9% annualized rate and the prior months job creation figure was given an upward revision. Also, the underemployed rate fell to 6.9%. Overall the report was solid and offset the concerns generated by the weak manufacturing data which came out on Monday. The Dow finished up 372 points to close the week at 26,573.
Here are two telling statistics which shed light on the disruptive changes occurring in the US retail industry. One stat by Moddy’s Analytics noted that shopping mall vacancies recently hit 9.4% which is the highest since 2011. On the flip side Ford and GM reported that sales of delivery vans have been a source of strength in vehicle sales. Ford noted that last month, van sales were up over 40% and GM also saw a healthy rise in delivery van sales.
The scouts this weekend will (ugh) car camp up near Blewett Pass for our annual Andy’s Cabin weekend. We will have 40 boys there and for the first time ever our girl scouts will invade the “bromasphere”. At Andy’s Cabin we set up a shooting range to include skeet, a potato gun, archery, rock climbing and repelling, orienteering and the ever-popular tomahawk throw. We will also have a campfire and skits.