Following Friday’s employment report that showed weaker-than-expected jobs creation, White House economic advisor Larry Kudlow was quick to stomp out fires in the capital markets, telling investors not to pay “any attention to it.”
Kudlow’s comments came after the Labor Department said that 20,000 jobs were added in February, falling well below a Dow Jones poll of economists who were expecting 180,000. It marked the weakest month of job creation since September 2017, stoking more fears of a global economic slowdown.
The Dow Jones Industrial Average fell as much as 200 points, but pared down its losses to settle for a 128-point decline as of 11:30 a.m. ET.
“I think you have timing issues with respect to the government shutdown, winter seasonal issues,” Kudlow told CNBC. “I think it’s very fluky. I wouldn’t pay any attention to it to be honest with you.”
In spite of the latest jobs number, Kudlow did mention that the U.S. economy is still on pace to realize a 3 percent gain. Furthermore, analysts and economists have been quick to point out that government data has been inconsistent since the 35-day shutdown, which delayed the release of data.
“Right now, we’re still waiting to get enough consistent data so we can assess what’s going on. At this point, these numbers don’t do that,” said Ward McCarthy, chief financial economist at Jefferies. “In some respect, it’s not dissimilar to the December retail sales numbers that were so weak they weren’t believable.”