The Bureau of Labor Statistics will release the March jobs report at 15:30 on Friday.
The strong private-employment report from staffing giant ADP has jolted confidence that the official jobs report will also show solid hiring.
Employers added 263,000 jobs in March.
Here are Wall Street’s forecasts for the jobs report:
Nonfarm payrolls: +180,000
Unemployment rate: 4.7%
Average hourly earnings month-on-month: +0.2%
Average hourly earnings year-on-year: +2.7%
Average weekly hours worked: 34.4
A few industries bear close attention in this jobs report.
Retail hiring recently slowed as companies were expected to close up to 3,500 stores in early 2017. Retail trade lost 26,000 jobs in February, with the majority of cuts coming from department stores that sell everything from furniture to vegetables.
Meanwhile, online retailers, the big competitor to physical stores, gained 3,200 jobs.
Manufacturing had a solid February, adding 28,000 jobs.
The larger services sector may also have experienced a pullback after the Institute of Supply Management’s survey of purchasing managers suggested slower hiring.
More broadly speaking, economists would be looking for more improvement in labor-force participation, which has stalled over the last three years. The share of prime-age workers — aged 25 and 54 — who joined the labor force rose to the highest level in five years in February.
The forecasts show that economists are expecting more of the same: Hiring is steady but not accelerating, the unemployment rate is at a post-recession low, and worker shortages are prompting modest wage hikes.