The crisis in trade talks weighed heavily on markets, helping the USD and the JPY, but the moves were not even. What’s next? The US consumer is central in the upcoming week’s events. Here the highlights for the next week.
The US accuses China of backing down on commitments in trade talks and eventually imposed new tariffs. The sudden deterioration in the market mood sent stocks lower and pushed the safe-haven yen higher. While some currencies such as the euro remained steady against the greenback, the New Zealand dollar stood out with massive losses, mostly due to the rate cut. The pound struggled amid the ongoing impasse in cross-party talks. The mixed inflation read from the US eventually triggered a minor sell-off of the greenback after gaining earlier.
- UK jobs report: Tuesday, 8:30. Despite high uncertainty due to Brexit, the UK labor market is doing very well indeed. The unemployment rate stood at 3.9% in February and is projected to have remained at this level also in March. Wages were rising by 3.5% on an annual basis, and a minor deceleration to 3.4% is on the cards in the data for March. The claimant count change is on the rise, with 28.3K in March and 24.2K projected for April. However, the increase in jobless claims has yet to be reflected in the unemployment rate.
- German GDP: Wednesday, 6:00. The largest economy in Europe escaped a recession, but only just. It remained flat in the last quarter of 2018 after contracting beforehand. A rebound is on the cards for the first quarter of 2019, albeit with a meager growth rate of 0.2%. The all euro-zone measure will be published later, but it is heavily influenced by the German number.
- US retail sales: Wednesday, 12:30. The US economy is based on consumption and the new figures for April will shed some light on prospects for the second quarter. Headline sales rose by 1.6% in March, and a more moderate growth rate of 0.2% is predicted for April. Core retail sales advanced by 1.2% and also here, expectations are for a slower expansion worth 0.7%. Another strong report will lower the chances of a rate cut by the Federal Reserve.
- Australian jobs report: Thursday, 1:30. The Australian job market is still growing at a rapid clip despite a slowdown in other fields. The Land Down Under gained 25.7K positions in March, and another increase is on the cards: 15.2K. The jobless rate is forecast to remain unchanged at 5%, a low level.
- US consumer sentiment: Friday, 14:00. The American consumer remains in focus also toward the end of the week, with the release of the consumer sentiment gauge from the University of Michigan. Consumers have been content with high levels of confidence. After a final score of 97.2 in April, the preliminary read for May is expected to show a level of 97.8 points.
*All times are GMT
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