Last week, concerns about a recession and Brexit continued to dominate the headlines. The Brexit drama was in full force as the British Parliament forced “indicative votes.” Recession fears continued to impact the markets and the data from the U.S. and other countries were unimpressive. The first week of the second quarter starts with a full build-up to the US Non-Farm Payrolls data. Here is an outlook on the releases scheduled for the upcoming week:
#1: China Caixin Manufacturing PMI (04/01/2019 Monday 13:45 GMT)
In China, the Caixin Manufacturing PMI increased to 49.9 in the month of February from the near three-year low level of 48.3 recorded in January. The reading for the month beat analysts’ expectations of 48.5. New orders and output increased slightly, despite exports slipping into contraction once again. However, capacity requirements continued to increase, with work backlogs rising further. On the other hand, efforts to cut costs led to a reduction in inventories and a decline in employment. Further, demand remained relatively subdued as outlook impacted purchasing activity. Business confidence for the year-ahead declined slightly. Meanwhile, average input costs declined for the third straight month, but prices charged increased a little. Forecast for March 2019: 50.1
#2: U.S. Retail Sales and Core Retail Sales (04/01/2019 Monday 12:30 GMT)
In the U.S., retail trade increased by 0.2 percent on a month-on-month basis in January after the reading for the prior month was revised upward to a decline of 1.6 percent. Analysts had expected the reading to come in flat. Sales rebounded in sectors such as sporting goods, books, and musical instruments. Core retail sales, which exclude autos, rose 0.90 percent on a month-over-month basis after the reading for the prior month was revised upward to fall of 2.1 percent. The reading for the month, however, beat analysts’ expectations for an increase of 0.2 percent in core retail trade. Retail sales and core retail sales forecast for February 2019: an increase of 0.3 percent and 0.4 percent is on the cards
#3: U.S. ISM Manufacturing PMI (04/01/2019 Monday 14:00 GMT)
In the U.S., the ISM Manufacturing PMI declined to the 54.2 level in February from the 56.6 level in the previous month. The reading for the month of January came in below analysts’ expectations of 55.5 and pointed towards the slowest increase in factory activity ever since November as the growth in new orders, employment, and production were less.
#4: Canada BoC Governor Stephen Poloz Speaks (04/01/2019 Monday 18:55 GMT)
Stephen Poloz, Governor of the Bank of Canada, is scheduled to speak at the Symposium organized by Nunavut Mining. Audience questions expected. Actually, the text of his speech will be released at the listed time. He is expected to deliver the speech 15 minutes later. Markets often turn volatile during his speeches. This is because traders make an attempt to understand the direction of interest rates.
#5: Australia RBA Rate Statement (04/02/2019 Tuesday 03:30 GMT)
The Reserve Bank of Australia releases the Rate Statement on the first Tuesday of every month except January. The RBA uses it a tool to communicate with investors as regards monetary policy. In addition to providing the outcome of the members’ decision on setting interest rates, it provides a commentary on the economic conditions that impacted their decision. More importantly, the Rate Statement provides an economic outlook and clues on future decisions.
#6: Australia Annual Budget Release (04/02/2019 Tuesday 08:30 GMT)
Released on an annual basis, the document outlines the government budget for the year. It indicates the expected income and expenditure levels, borrowing plans, financial objectives, and details about investments. Traders care because domestic borrowing and spending have an impact on the country’s economy. While increased spending generates jobs and work for contractors, borrowing affects the nation’s credit rating and fiscal position.
#7: U.S. Core Durable Goods Orders (04/02/2019 Tuesday 12:30 GMT)
In the U.S., new orders for durable goods manufactured in the country, excluding transportation items, declined 0.2 percent from the previous month in January. The reading for the prior month was revised upward to an increase of 0.3 percent. The figure for January missed analysts’ expectations for a 0.1 percent increase. Forecast for February 2019: an increase of 0.3 percent is expected
#8: Australia Retail Sales (04/03/2019 Wednesday 00:30 GMT)
In Australia, retail trade increased by 0.1 percent on a month-over-month basis in January after the 0.4 percent decline in the prior month. The figure for January missed analysts’ expectations for an increase of 0.3 percent. Sales recovered in other retailing but fell at a lesser pace in clothing, personal accessories retailing, and footwear. Sales at household goods retailing outlets remained unchanged. Sales growth slowed down in food retailing, and restaurants, takeaway services, and cafes. Sales at department stores dipped further. Forecast for February 2019: an increase of 0.3 percent is on the cards
#9: Canada Employment Change and Unemployment Rate (04/05/2019 Friday 12:30 GMT)
Canada added 55,900 jobs in the month of February, following the hiring of 66,800 workers in the prior month. Analysts had expected the job additions to remain at the same level. Strong gains in full-time jobs more than offset the loss in part-time jobs. Ontario was the only province to record notable job additions in February. In Manitoba, employment declined but in the other provinces, there was no change. Job additions were higher in professional, technical, and scientific services; public administration; agriculture; and natural resources. Fewer workers were hired in food and accommodation and transportation and warehousing services. There was an overall increase in the number of employees but the number of self-employed remained unchanged. Forecast for March 2019: Canada is expected to lose as many as 10,000 jobs in March
In Canada, the unemployment rate remained at the 5.8 percent level in February, the highest ever since October. More people were looking out for work. Forecast for March 2019: 5.8 percent
#10: U.S. Average Hourly Earnings (04/05/2019 Friday 12:30 GMT)
In the U.S., the all-employees average hourly earnings on private nonfarm payrolls rose by 0.4 percent in February from the previous month. Average hourly earnings increased by 0.1 percent in January. The reading for February beat analysts’ expectations for a 0.3 percent increase. Meanwhile, the average hourly earnings of nonsupervisory and production employees in the private sector rose by 0.4 percent in February. Forecast for March 20129: an increase of 0.2 percent is on the cards
#11: U.S. Non-Farm Employment Change (04/05/2019 Friday 12:30 GMT)
In the U.S., the nonfarm payrolls rose by 20,000 in February, following the upward revision of the previous month’s figure to 311,000. The reading for February came in well below analysts’ expectations of 180,000. This is by far the lowest gain in employment ever since February 2017. Employment contracted in the construction sector, while workers were hired in business and professional services, wholesale trade, and health care. Forecast for March 2019: the United States of America is expected to add 175,000 jobs
#12: U.S. Unemployment Rate (04/05/2019 Friday 12:30 GMT)
In the U.S., the unemployment rate dropped to 3.8 percent in the month of February from 4.0 percent in the prior month. The reading for the month came in below analysts’ expectations of 3.9 percent. The number of unemployed people in the U.S. dropped 300,000 to 6.2 million.