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On the radar: UAW strike gets tentative agreement, Chicago teachers walk out

The tentative agreement between GM and the UAW union means the strike there should be officially ended soon. In terms of the October Employment Situation at 8:30 ET on Friday, November 1, the nearly 50,000 workers will still be subtracted from the nonfarm payroll totals. The strike began just after the survey period ending September 14 and crossed over the survey end date of October 12. However, those workers will be added back in when the November Employment Situation is released on Friday, December 6. The exact numbers on strike in the October survey period will be reported by the BLS on Friday, October 25.

Big strikes can contribute to big swings in the level change of nonfarm payroll headlines, although they rare last more than a single survey period. However, the impact is generally well anticipated and taken into account in market forecasts and reactions. The main problem of the timing of this strike and settlement is that it adds noise at time when Fed policymakers are trying to get a clear read on economic conditions.


The Chicago Teachers Union strike of about 25,000 workers that went into effect on October 17 began after the end of the survey period, so won’t show up in the October Employment Situation. Whether it will affect the November report depends on if the strike lasts through November 16 survey period end.

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