The weekly unemployment claims figure rose back to the previous range, after touching 5 year lows. The market expected a jump to 362K. The past previous weeks have been superb: 335K and 330K.
There were doubts about these numbers, on tone time effects. The leap back to the previous range confirms these doubts. The 4-week moving average remains low.
A big surprise was seen in personal income: +2.6%, far better than 0.7% that was expected. Did people get big bonuses towards the end of the year? Perhaps this was related to the fiscal cliff? This will probably be followed by a sharp fall, as history shows.
EUR/USD was trading around 1.3550 before the release. USD/JPY was steady around 91.
The Fed’s focus is on jobs. ADP came out better than expected, with a gain of 192K, but the data for December was revised to the downside. Tomorrow’s Non-Farm Payrolls will rock the markets.
- Personal spending:+0.2% vs. +0.4% expected.
- Core PCE Price Index: flat vs. +0.1% expected.
- Employment Cost Index: +0.5% vs. +0.6% expected.
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