Belated U.S. Jobs Day

October 22, 2013

The U.S. Labor Department’s September jobs report, due initially on October 4, arrives today at 12:30 GMT. Analysts look for an unchanged 7.3% unemployment rate and employment growth of around 180K.  Whisper numbers on non-farm payrolls are above the analysts consensus.

Market movement has been muted ahead of the jobs report and because of a lack of other meaningful news.

  • The dollar is narrowly mixed, firming 0.2% against the yen and Swissie and 0.1% versus the euro and sterling but dipping 0.2% relative to the Aussie dollar and 0.1% vis-a-vis the loonie.  The kiwi and yuan are steady.
  • The German Dax and Paris Cac are so far unchanged from Monday closing levels.  The Spanish IBEX has dipped 0.2% while equities are 0.2% firmer in London and up 0.1% in Milan.  Japan’s Nikkei closed 0.1% higher, but drops of 1.4% and 1.0% occurred in Indonesia and China.  Stocks rose 0.6% in Thailand, 0.5% in Singapore and 0.4% in Australia but fell by 0.5% in Hong Kong and 0.1% in India.
  • WTI crude oil has eased further below the $100 per barrel threshold, sliding 0.3% to $98.90.
  • Gold edged 0.1% lower to $1313.90 per troy ounce.
  • Ten-year Japanese JGBs, British gilts and German bunds are each unchanged.

British public finances for September were somewhat better than forecast.  Public sector borrowing of GBP 9.368 billion was down from GBP 10.808 billion in August.  The GBP 11.1 billion budget deficit was a billion pounds less than a year earlier.  Outstanding debt by September stood at 75.9% of GDP.

Icelandic wage cost inflation ticked up to 5.9% in September from 5.7% in August.  Polish retail sales growth of 3.9% on year in September was a half percentage point greater than in August.  Finland’s 7.6% jobless rate in September was also a half percentage point above the prior month’s reading.  The Swiss trade surplus of CHF 2.494 billion last month was 34.6% higher than in August.  Danish retail sales recorded a larger 12-month decline of 2.4% in September.

Spanish sovereign debt auctions of 3-month and 9-month Letras were well received.

According to Conference Board compilations, China’s index of leading economic indicators climbed 0.9% last month, much faster than the 0.2% uptick in the index of coincident economic indicators.

The Bank of Japan’s quarterly senior loan officers survey revealed healthier corporate loan demand with a 3Q13 reading of +4, six points better than in 2Q, and expectations of further modest improvement in the final quarter of this year.

Chinese property prices advanced in 65 of 70 cities last month.  Such posted an on-year advance of 9.1%, with 12-month increases in all but one of the surveyed cities on such a basis.

Malaysia’s jobless rate ticked up to 3.2% in August from 3.0% the month before.  The Taiwanese jobless rate remained at 4.2% in September.  South Africa’s index of leading economic indicators climbed 0.7% in August.

Aside from the all-important U.S. jobs report, investors will learn the latest reading on the Richmond Fed manufacturing index and weekly chain store sales today.  Canadian retail sales figures arrive as well.

Copyright 2013, Larry Greenberg.  All rights reserved.  No secondary distribution without express permission.

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