The US dollar retreated for a second week, even though it was cushioned new fears about the fiscal cliff. The upcoming week is usually one of the most relaxed weeks in the year, as many celebrate Christmas. However, there are still some events to move the illiquid markets, as well as headlines from Washington. Here is an outlook for the major events this week.
Last week US GDP growth rate for the third quarter surprised to the upside with a revised 3.1% from 2.7%, beating forecasts for a 2.8% rise. Jobless claims increased to 361K still on positive ground. However these encouraging figures could soon lose their glow unless an agreement is reached at the last moment before the fiscal cliff deadline expires.
- US Unemployment Claims: Thursday, 13:30. The number of Americans filing initial claims for unemployment benefits edged up by 17,000 to 361,000 last week following five weeks of declines, indicating the labor market relies on faster economic growth. Economists expected 358,000 claims last week. Now that the number of layoffs has declined, hiring is expected to improve next year. Another rise to 365,000 is expected now.
- US CB Consumer Confidence: Thursday, 15:00. U.S. consumer confidence soared in November to the highest level since February 2008, reaching 73.7 from an upwardly revised 73.1 in the previous month. The rise occurred amid an uptick in expectations. Economists anticipated a 73.0 reading. A decline to 70.3 is forecasted this time.
- US New Home Sales: Thursday, 15:00. New single-family home sales declined moderately in October to 368,000 from downwardly revised 369,000 in the previous month casting shadow over US housing recovery. However analysts believe the housing market contributed to US economic growth this year. An increase to 382,000 is predicted now. Existing home sales rose very nicely.
- US Pending Home Sales: Friday, 15:00. The number of existing homes under contract, edged up in October to nearly six years high of 104.8, rising 5.2% compared to the previous month. Improved labor market conditions and record-low mortgage rates boosted home buying in the US. A small decline of 0.3% is expected this time.
*All times are GMT.
That’s it for the major events this week. Stay tuned for coverage on specific currencies