The Labor Department will release its October employment report at 8:30 a.m. on Friday, as scheduled, the department confirmed on Wednesday.
Severe weather raised concerns that the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the agency within the Labor Department that compiles the report, would be unable to put out the report on time. Superstorm Sandy caused power outages and flooding up and down the Eastern Seaboard earlier this week and shut down federal government offices in Washington on Monday and Tuesday.
The employment report is compiled in top-secret, closed-door meetings under a tight deadline. Former BLS Commissioner Keith Hall told National Journal earlier this month that he wouldn’t learn the details of the household survey, which determines the unemployment rate, until the Monday of the week of its Friday release, and that he wouldn’t see the payroll data until that Wednesday. Shutdowns on such a tight timeline could prove problematic, and the Labor Department has had to delay economic reports in the past because of severe weather.
The October employment report will provide one of the last economic data points before the country casts it vote on Nov. 6. Economists surveyed by Reuters expect only tepid improvement in payroll growth of 125,000, and they predict unemployment will tick up to 7.9 percent after a surprise 0.3-point drop in September to 7.8 percent.