The week after April’s jobs report came out, the President of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, James Bullard, spoke at the Economic Club of Minnesota. During his remarks, Bullard stated that his base-case scenario for the economy was slowing growth, a somewhat softer labor market, and declining inflation - in other words, the now widely heralded soft landing.
Bullard is hardly alone in his view - the soft-landing scenario that we’ve been vocally and vociforously forecasting for a year has suddenly become the clear consensus view after having been disregarded as delusional even just a few months ago.
Bullard went on to say that “the rumors of the imminent demise of the economy are greatly exaggerated,” pointing to April’s stronger-than-expected jobs report as evidence, after which he recommended to the audience that “maybe you should change your models a little bit.”
Having missed the April jobs numbers by just 4,000 jobs or a paltry 1.5%, we’re pretty comfortable with our NFP forecasting model. And lest anyone think we’re cherry picking a single month, we’d note that our cumulative forecast since January of 2022 is off from actual by a minuscule 1.8%.