Week Ahead – Bring on the Jobs Report

Attention shifting to US election

This week Jerome Powell was the headline act as he outlined the future monetary policy framework of the world’s most important central bank. Next week, it’s over to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics as it releases the August jobs report. The next few jobs reports could be crucial, coming ahead of Novembers election, with President Donald Trump pinning his hopes on the public trusting him with the economy over former Vice President Joe Biden, after the pandemic threatened to derail his re-election campaign.


Sunday 30 August

Economic data:

  • Chinese Manufacturing PMI

Monday 31 August

-Fed Vice Chair Clarida participates in a virtual discussion hosted by the Peterson Institute for International Economics. Atlanta Fed President Bostic discusses philanthropy and an inclusive recovery, hosted by the Florida Philanthropic Network

-Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte takes part in the South-East Europe Forum

-ECB’s Head of Monetary Policy Strategy, Katrin Assenmacher, discusses Facebook’s Libra cryptocurrency project and its implications for monetary policy and financial stability, in a SUERF webinar

-UK summer bank holiday

Economic data:

  • Chile copper production
  • Colombia unemployment
  • South Korea industrial production
  • Japan industrial production, retail sales, housing starts
  • Australia Melbourne Institute inflation, private sector credit
  • New Zealand ANZ business confidence
  • China Caixin Manufacturing PMI
  • Turkey Trade data
  • South Africa Money Supply
  • German CPI
  • India GDP, Italy GDP 

Tuesday 1 September

– US tariffs on EU goods go into effect on 1 September. The Trump administration continues to pressure the EU into settling a long-running dispute over illegal subsidies to Airbus SE

-Fed Governor Lael Brainard will take part in a virtual discussion hosted by the Brookings Institution

-US new vehicle sales in August are expected to drop 16.8%, due partly to a low supply of popular vehicles as automakers race to rebuild inventories after pandemic-induced factory shutdowns last spring

Economic data:

  • US Markit manufacturing PMI, ISM manufacturing, construction spending, Wards total vehicle sales
  • Unemployment: Euro-area, Germany
  • Manufacturing PMI Readings: UK, Brazil, Mexico, Russia, India, China, Eurozone, Germany
  • UK mortgage approvals
  • Australia RBA cash rate target, AiG performance of manufacturing index, BoP, building approvals
  • New Zealand building permits
  • GDP: South Korea, Brazil, Czech, Hungary
  • Japan jobless, capital spending, Manufacturing PMI, vehicle sales

Wednesday, 2 September

-Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester talks about the U.S. outlook and monetary policy at the 17th Annual NABE Foundation Economic Measurement Seminar, via videoconference.

-EU chief Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier addresses a webinar co-organized by the IIEA and the European Commission Representation in Ireland. Will provide updates with the status of talks between the bloc and the U.K.; obstacles in achieving an agreement; and key issues that will shape the future relationship.

Economic data:

  • US ADP employment change, factory orders, durable goods, Fed Beige Book
  • U.K. Nationwide house prices
  • New Zealand house prices
  • South Korea CPI
  • Spain unemployment
  • Japan monetary base
  • Australia GDP

Thursday 3 September

-The Brookings Institution hosts BOE Governor Andrew Bailey, who’ll speak on the future of cryptocurrencies and stablecoins

-Chicago Fed President Charles Evans discusses the U.S. economy and monetary policy in a virtual event hosted by the Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce

-Harvard Business School professor David Scharfstein delivers a keynote lecture on the future of finance at the ECB’s annual research conference, chaired by the central bank’s Executive Board member Isabel Schnabel

-Riksbank Governor Stefan Ingves speaks at the UBS Nordic Financial Service Virtual Conference about Sweden’s monetary policy and the financial health of the country’s banks. First Deputy Governor Cecilia Skingsley speaks later about the future of money

Economic data:

  • US initial jobless claims, Markit services/composite PMIs, ISM services index
  • Canada international merchandise trade
  • South Korea foreign reserves
  • Australia trade
  • PMIs: Hong Kong, Singapore, India, Japan, Russia, China, U.K., Euro-area, Spain
  • CPI: Switzerland, Turkey
  • Romania retail sales
  • New Zealand ANZ commodity prices
  • Russia gold and forex reserve

Friday 4 September

– Forum the European House holds its 46th annual forum in Cernobbio. Speakers include French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire, EU Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier, and German Deputy Finance Minister Joerg Kukies. Through 6 September

– The nonfarm payroll report is expected to show the economy added 1.52 million jobs, down from the prior month gain of 1.763 million. The unemployment rate is expected to improve from 10.2% to 9.9%

Economic data:

  • US unemployment
  • Canada unemployment
  • UK Markit/CIPS construction PMI
  • Russia CPI
  • Germany factory orders
  • Hungary industrial production
  • Australia retail sales
  • Singapore retail sales

Sovereign Rating Updates:

  • Denmark (Fitch)
  • Ukraine (Fitch)
  • Finland (S&P)
  • Spain (DBRS)



The Fed’s major policy shift of average inflation targeting could keep interest rates grounded until next framework policy review in five years. The Fed also signaled that employment can strengthen and the economy could heat up without creating an unwarranted spike with inflation. The short-term focus for the Fed will remain with the labor market and economic rebound has been painstakingly slow. The nonfarm payroll report is expected to show payrolls increased by 1.52 million and that the unemployment rate improved to 9.9%. Job growth continues but the pace is somewhat disappointing considering all the central and fiscal stimulus that has been pumped into the economy.

Close attention will also fall on the ISM Manufacturing survey which is expected to slightly increase from 54.2 to 54.4. The Richmond manufacturing index better-than-expected reading could suggest the ISM data will impress.

US politics

Now that both the Democratic and Republican National Conventions are in the books, the focus will be on the polls and whether President Trump can chip away at Former-VP Biden’s lead. With the first Presidential debate at the end of the month, the weeks leading up to it will be intense campaigning.


The economic rebound in the region has been encouraging in recent months but spikes in Covid cases in France, Italy, Spain, Germany and elsewhere have been cause for concern, with the UK seeing fit to add quarantine restrictions to those returning from many countries across the block. The PMIs have already started to slip and the final readings next week may add to those concerns.


The UK apparently has two weeks to save a post-Brexit deal according to EU sources, with Michel Barnier and David Frost planning emergency talks next week. The EU is apparently growing frustrated with the UK’s refusal to clarify the country’s post Brexit position on state aid, with the UK claiming they won’t be forced into doing so by Brussels. With the UK September target approaching and EU’s October deadline not far away, crunch talks are now upon us if a no-deal is going to be avoided.


“We are not out of firepower by any means,” was the message from Bank of England Governor, Andrew Bailey, as he spoke at the Federal Reserve’s virtual symposium, which is traditionally held at Jackson Hole. Bailey was keen to stress the availability of policy tools, including negative interest rates, should the MPC be required to use them. Interest rates currently stand at 0.1% and the asset purchase program at £745 billion, the latter of which is expected to rise later this year.


Trade relations have temporarily thawed slightly with the US. Likely to be a temporary state of affairs, but confidence building nevertheless. China data features official and non-official PMI’s that are expected to show China’s recovery remains on track. An unexpected negative set of results could see China equities move sharply lower.  

Hong Kong

Hong Kong Retail Sales expected to be dire as the economy remains in deep recession. Arrests under new security law accelerating, undermining international confidence in the territory.

That has been ignored by stock markets which are concentrating on upcoming IPOs such as Ant Financial, proving that money talks.


Covid-19 continues to wreak havoc on the domestic economy, heightening fears about growth as the stability of the banking system. The rupee has resumed its slide and investors are growing nervous the consumer will continue to show signs of weakness as the virus spreads to the rural economy.

India GDP should rebound to 3.1% mid-week, a welcome recovery from Q1 but still well below what is required to lift the economy from recession. The INR and Indian financial stocks will remain unloved..

New Zealand 

The New Zealand covid-19 outbreak appears to be coming under control, lifting the currency and equities. An extended Auckland lockdown will weigh on data in the coming weeks though. The RBNZ is considering negative rates and further signs of deterioration with the outlook will raise expectations for further easing.


Heavy data week against a backdrop of deteriorating trade relations with China, with constant probes,enquiries and limits on non-core Australian imports. 

RBA on Tuesday will remain unchanged, but expect more guidance on dovish outlook. Negative rates are not a policy option. If mentioned will be strongly AUD negative.

GDP Wednesday will confirm Australia’s recovery is on track despite the Victoria lockdown.

Negative developments or prints from any or all of the above willweigh on Australian equity markets, but not the currency, which is a US Dollar story.


Japan releases Industrial Production, Retail Sales and Jibun Manf. PMI in a busy week for data. All are expected to confirm Japan remains in recession with domestic demand tepid and exporters struggling with recessions internationally. Government considering further stimulus measures.

All attention though will be on the resignation of PM Abe for health reasons. Nikkei fell strongly Friday but the effects are likely to be transitory. Economic policy will not change markedly, but succession uncertainty will weigh on Japan equities and keep the Yen firm. 



Oil output in the Gulf of Mexico was spared by Hurricane Laura and a lot of the production should start to run normally within a week. With most of the hurricane-related gains slowly fading away, oil seems poised to return to its frustrating range.

The primary driver for oil prices will now fall back to demand outlook. Frustratingly slow reopening efforts and fears of the next wave of Covid-19 will continue to weigh on crude demand outlook.


It’s been an ugly three weeks for gold. The Fed’s new stance with inflation helped drive Treasury yields and the dollar higher while sinking gold prices. Despite the initial move higher for the dollar, the downtrend should persist as Fed will remain accommodative for years to come. Gold volatility will remain elevated, but light trading volumes could see the $1900-$2000 range hold up.

This article is for general information purposes only. It is not investment advice or a solution to buy or sell securities. Opinions are the authors; not necessarily that of OANDA Corporation or any of its affiliates, subsidiaries, officers or directors. Leveraged trading is high risk and not suitable for all. You could lose all of your deposited funds.

Craig Erlam

Craig Erlam

Senior Market Analyst, UK & EMEA at OANDA
Based in London, Craig Erlam joined OANDA in 2015 as a market analyst. With many years of experience as a financial market analyst and trader, he focuses on both fundamental and technical analysis while producing macroeconomic commentary. His views have been published in the Financial Times, Reuters, The Telegraph and the International Business Times, and he also appears as a regular guest commentator on the BBC, Bloomberg TV, FOX Business and SKY News. Craig holds a full membership to the Society of Technical Analysts and is recognised as a Certified Financial Technician by the International Federation of Technical Analysts.
Craig Erlam
Craig Erlam

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