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The UK, US and the Eurozone in the week ahead


As March transitions into April, the markets are facing another wave of likely rough data, culminating in Friday’s nonfarm jobs report.

US: Non farm payrolls

Broadly the markets survived last week’s data gauntlet, investors distracted by a G7 pledge to do what it takes to support the global economy, the Fed’s latest kitchen sink assault, and a $2 trillion stimulus package from the US government.

It is unclear this time out, however, whether there will be such fiscal and monetary policy measures to divert the market’s attentions from some cold, hard numbers.

Things properly get underway on Tuesday, with the release of the Chinese manufacturing and services PMIs. Given that the situation slightly shifted in the country between February and March, it will be interesting to see where the latter’s PMIs stand in comparison to the 35.7 and 29.6 readings posted in the former. Tuesday also sees the US CB consumer confidence number, as well as a potentially headline-stealing G7 meeting.

Moving on to Wednesday and the Caixin manufacturing PMI from China is joined by the final Markit and ISM manufacturing readings from the US. The flash Markit number came in at a better than forecast 49.2, though the final reading could fall from that level once the last week of March is factored it.

Thursday’s economic calendar, likely every week from now into the foreseeable future, is built around the latest unemployment claims reading. Last week’s figure revealed 3.283 million new jobless claims for the week ending 21st March, blowing October 1982’s previous record high of 695,000 out the water.

Then, on Friday, we get to the biggie. Alongside the final Markit and ISM services PMIs – the flash reading for the former was 39.1 – comes the first nonfarm jobs report covering the coronavirus crisis. And if the unemployment claims data is anything to go by, it could be one for the history books.

UK: Busy economic calendar

On top of the Chinese data – always of interest to the commodity-heavy FTSE – mentioned above, the UK has its own busy economic calendar this week.

The latest current account number is released on Tuesday, alongside the final Q4 GDP reading, a figure hailing from a different world entirely.

Wednesday’s final manufacturing PMI has a flash reading of 48.0 for reference, while Friday’s final services PMI has a flash reading of 35.7 as its own benchmark. In the middle of those updates is Thursday’s construction PMI.

Eurozone: Impact on Spain and Italy

In terms of Eurozone-specific data, the important days are arguably Wednesday and Friday.

Wednesday’s final manufacturing PMI arrives after a flash reading of 44.8, while Friday’s services equivalent follows a flash reading of 28.4. On both days investors will also get a chance to assess the damage done to Spain and Italy specifically.

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This article is brought to you in association with Spreadex. All opinions expressed in this article are from the author and do not necessarily represent the opinions of The Armchair Trader. You can find out more about Spreadex products and services here, or find more articles from Connor Campbell here.

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