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The beginning of the new month is busy as always, culminating with the Non-Farm Payrolls. There are lots of other major events as well. Here’s an outlook for the market-moving events that are awaiting us.

The Chinese central bank lifted the peg on the yuan, in a move that was anticipated for a long time. Commodity currencies enjoyed it, while others currencies had only limited gains against the dollar. This gap will probably continue this week as well. Let’s start:

  1. American Personal Spending: Published on Monday at 12:30 GMT. This is an important indicator of the economy – more spending means more economic activity. In the past three months, the growth rate of spending fell short of expectations, and became worrying last month when it remained unchanged. A drop in spending will rock the markets.
  2. American CB Consumer Confidence: Published on Tuesday at 14:00 GMT. The Conference Board has shown great optimism in recent months. The index reached 63.3 points, the highest level in over two years. This major survey of 5,000 consumers is expected to drop this time to 62.6 points.
  3. British Final GDP: Published on Wednesday at 8:30 GMT. The final version of Britain’s GDP is expected to confirm the improved second release and show a growth rate of 0.3% in the first quarter. Only an upwards revision of the weak growth rate will boost the Pound. The next quarters will probably be worse in Britain, with budget cuts expected to dampen the recovery.
  4. Swiss KOF Economic Barometer: Published on Wednesday at 9:30 GMT. This composite index is highly regarded and moves the Swissy. Last month saw a significant rise from 2.05 to 2.16 – a score which was better than expected. The Swiss economy is doing well, and so is their currency, especially against the Euro. A small dip to 2.14 is expected now.
  5. American ADP Non-Farm Payrolls: Published on Wednesday at 12:15 GMT. The report for the private sector is sometimes called the “mini Non-Farm Payrolls”. In many months, it didn’t predict the direction of the NFP, but this changed last month, as the weak growth in the private sector was reflected in the NFP 2 days later. Three months of job gains will probably be followed by a fourth one. Expectations stand on a gain of 61K jobs.
  6. Canadian GDP: Published on Wednesday at 12:30 GMT. Canada’s GDP for the month of March, that finished Q1, was excellent – 0.6%. This exceeded expectations and completed an annual growth rate of 6.1% in Q1. A modest rise of 0.2% is expected this time.
  7. Japanese Tankan Manufacturing Index: Published on  Wednesday  at 23:50 GMT. This fresh quarterly indicator always rocks the markets. 1,200 large manufacturers have shown less pessimism in Q1 as the core climbed from -24 to -14, as expected. The number for Q2 is expected to be slightly better, but still in the negative zone: -3.
  8. American Unemployment Claims: Published on Thursday at 12:30 GMT. This weekly figure is still causing trouble for the dollar. Jobless claims refuse to drop below 430K, and even rise. A significant drop is necessary in order to see a big leap in the NFP. This is the last job-related figure before the NFP. A small rise from 457K to 461K is expected now.
  9. American Pending Home Sales: Published on Thursday at 14:00 GMT. The number of closed contracts for homes leaped in the past three months at very strong rates – 8.2%, 5.3% and 6%. This time, a drop will probably be seen, cooling down the markets, although its scale will probably be minor – 0.5%.
  10. American ISM Manufacturing PMI: Published on Thursday at 14:00 GMT. Purchasing managers in the manufacturing sector have been positive in the past 10 months, sending the score above 50 – meaning economic expansion. Last month saw a small, yet expected drop from 60.4 to 59.7 points. Another drop is expected now.
  11. Non-Farm Payrolls: Published on Friday at 12:30 GMT. The number one event in forex was worrying last month. A big jump was recorded – 432K, but this came almost only from the public sector  the government’s hiring for the decennial census. Private sector growth was weak. One point of light was seen though – the unemployment rate unexpectedly dropped to 9.7%. Without government aid, Non-Farm Payrolls are now expected to correct and drop by 100K. The unemployment rate is expected to rise to 9.7%.

That’s it for the major events this week. Stay tuned for outlooks on specific currencies.

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