The Week Ahead: Jobs and trade

Arguably, economic life is a brightly blazing unemployment rate, surrounded by a collection of economic planetoids of little significance in comparison.

Which is odd, because the employment situation report, out Friday at 8:30 a.m. New York time, is like all such reports a trailing indicator, whose aggregate numbers say much about the past but little about the future, and stand far beyond the ability of presidents or CEOs to influence. And yet, it is the jobs report that grabs the headlines and by which the successes and failures of politicians and nations are measured.

As always, the job report gets a sneak preview from the private sector, the ADP employment report on Wednesday at 8:15 a.m.

Also out on Wednesday, international trade at 8:30 a.m., providing fresh figures against which President Trump’s recent tariffs announcement can be measured.

In Fedworld:

The Federal Reserve Beige Bookwhich provides a narrative of economic conditions in each of the Fed’s regions, will be published on Wednesday at 2 p.m.

Fed Vice Chairman Randal Quarles speaks about foreign bank regulation at the Institute of International Bankers Washington Conference on Monday at 1:15 p.m.

Fed Gov. Lael Brainard will present an economic and monetary policy outlook at the Money Marketeers Forum in New York on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

Leading indicators (in descending order of importance):

The interest rate spread between 10-year Treasuries and the federal funds rate, reported continually during market hours.

The M2 money supply, at 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

The average hourly workweek in manufacturing from the employment report at 8:30 a.m. Friday.

Manufacturers’ new orders for consumer goods and materials from the factory orders report at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

The S&P 500 index, reported continually during market hours.

Average weekly initial claims for unemployment, from the jobless claims report at 8:30 a.m. Thursday.

Manufacturers’ new orders for non-defense capital goods from the factory orders report at 10 a.m. Tuesday.

Events arranged by day:

Monday: Institute of Supply Management non-manufacturing index at 10 a.m. and Fed Vice-Chairman Quarles speech at 1:15 p.m.

Tuesday: Factory orders at 8:30 a.m, and Fed Gov. Brainard speech at 7 p.m.

Wednesday: ADP employment report at 8:15 a.m., international trade and productivity and costs, each at 8:30 a.m., petroleum inventories at 10:30 a.m. and the Fed Beige Book at 2 p.m.

Thursday: Jobless claims at 8:30 a.m.and the M2 money supply at 4:30 p.m.

Friday: Employment situation at 8:30 a.m.

I also keep an eye on the Baltic Dry Index, updated daily, and the 5-year implied inflation rate which is the difference between the yields on 5-year U.S. Treasury notes and  5-year Treasury inflation protected securities (TIPS).

By Tim Bovee, Portland, Oregon, March 3, 2018


Tim Bovee, Private Trader tracks the analysis and trades of a private trader for his own accounts. Nothing in this blog constitutes a recommendation to buy or sell stocks, options or any other financial instrument. The only purpose of this blog is to provide education and entertainment.

No trader is ever 100 percent successful in his or her trades. Trading in the stock and option markets is risky and uncertain. Each trader must make trading decisions for his or her own account, and take responsibility for the consequences.

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