Week Ahead

All eyes turn to the US employment report next week, which will probably add to signs of a gradual job recovery, as well as worldwide manufacturing PMI surveys and an OPEC+ meeting that is expected to offer guidance into the coalition’s production plan from May. Elsewhere, key data to watch for include US construction spending; UK and Russia Q4 GDP updates; Eurozone inflation and business morale; Japan’s tankan survey, industrial production and retail sales; Australia, India and Turkey foreign trade figures. [more]

The US jobs report will probably show a payroll increase of 655 thousand in March, the largest employment gain since last October, as the labor market shows signs of recovery following the approval of President Biden’s relief package and as several states ease coronavirus-induced restrictions amid the rapid pace of vaccination. Meanwhile, the ISM Manufacturing PMI survey should point to the fastest pace of expansion in factory activity since May 2004. Other notable publications are construction spending; ADP employment change; pending home sales; Case-Shiller home prices; Chicago PMI; Dallas Fed Manufacturing Index; and the final reading of Markit Manufacturing PMI.

Elsewhere in America, key data to follow include Canada monthly GDP, building permits and Markit Manufacturing PMI; and Brazil industrial output, unemployment rate, foreign trade and Markit Manufacturing PMI. Chile’s central bank will be deciding on monetary policy.

Across the Atlantic, the UK will be publishing the final estimates of fourth-quarter GDP growth and Markit Manufacturing PMI, alongside current account, Bank of England’s monetary indicators, and Nationwide housing prices. Flash data from the ONS showed Britain’s economy grew by 1 percent in the last quarter of 2020 driven by government consumption and fixed investment, while household consumption contracted.

Elsewhere in Europe, key inflation reports will be released for the Eurozone, including those for Germany, France, Italy and Spain, with forecasts signaling the biggest rise in consumer prices in the 19-nation Eurozone economy since January last year. Investors will also keep an eye on the Euro Area business survey; Germany jobless data, retail sales and import prices; Spain and Italy Markit Manufacturing PMIs; France consumer confidence and household consumption; Russia fourth-quarter GDP numbers; Switzerland KOF economic barometer, retail trade and consumer prices; and Turkey foreign trade. Meantime, the Eurozone, Germany and France will publish their final estimates of Markit Manufacturing PMIs while many other countries like Spain and Italy will release flash readings.

In Asia, investor focus turns to the Bank of Japan’s quarterly tankan business sentiment survey, which is set to show an improvement in Japanese big manufacturers’ confidence in the first quarter. Data on industrial production, retail sales and unemployment rate will also be keenly watched. Elsewhere, China will be releasing March’s manufacturing PMI figures from both the NBS and Caixin, with forecasts pointing to a steady factory activity growth as the world’s second-largest economy consolidates its recovery from last year’s massive slump.

In Australia, key data to watch for include the Ai Group manufacturing index, trade balance, building permits, and home loans; while in India, the flash estimate of foreign trade, current account and Markit PMIs will be in the spotlight.

Other highlights for the Asia-Pacific region include: South Korea inflation, industrial production, retail sales, business morale, trade balance and Markit Manufacturing PMI; New Zealand building permits; Hong Kong retail trade; Thailand industrial production; Indonesia inflation rate; and the Philippines foreign trade.

Investors will also follow an OPEC+ meeting on Thursday, which is expected to offer guidance for the cartel’s production plan from May. Major producers are likely to roll over existing policies once again as tighter pandemic curbs in Europe and vaccine delays darkened fuel demand outlook.