BRITISH, US DATA MAKE HEADLINES THURSDAY
A steady stream of economic data will flow through the financial markets on Thursday, with reports from the United Kingdom and the United States set to make headlines.
Action begins at 08:00 GMT with a report on the Eurozone current account balance. Brussels’ current account surplus is forecast to weaken to €32.3 billion in February from €37.6 billion in January.
Shifting gears to the United Kingdom, the Office for National Statistics will report on retail sales at 08:30 GMT. Receipts at retail stores, long considered to be a proxy for consumer spending, is expected to decline 0.5% in March. That translates into an annualized gain of 2%.
Excluding fuel, retail receipts are projected to fall 0.4% in March, which translates into a year-over-year gain of 1.4%.
The North American session begins with a speech from Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) member Lael Brainard, who is scheduled to give her talk at 12:00 GMT. Later in the session, Fed Governor Randal Quarles is expected to deliver remarks.
In terms of economic data, the Department of Labor will issue a report on initial jobless claims at 12:30 GMT. The number of Americans filing for first-time unemployment benefits likely fell by 3,000 to a seasonally adjusted 230,000 in the week ended 14 April.
The Philadelphia Fed is scheduled to release its monthly manufacturing survey at 12:30 GMT. The monthly gauge is forecast to fall 2.2 points to 20.1 in April.
A report on Canada’s employment situation courtesy of ADP will be also be released at 12:30 GMT.
Earlier in the day, the Australian government reported a much slower than expected rise in March employment. Overall employment rose by 4,900 in March, compared with expectations of 21,000. Full-time jobs plunged by 19,900 after surging 64,900 the previous month. Meanwhile, part-time work rose by 24,800 positions after shedding 47,400 the previous month.
Australia’s dollar was little changed in the presence of weaker than expected jobs data. AUD/USD was last seen trading at 0.7784. The pair has been choppy as of late, with prices hovering between 0.7700 and 0.7800 for most of April.
Europe’s common currency traded within a tight range during the early Asian trade, with prices hovering around 1.2380 US. EUR/USD has stabilized over the past two days, although prices have failed to make a decisive break above 1.2400. Immediate resistance is located at 1.2413, which is the top from 17 April.
Like other dollar pairs, cable was little changed on Thursday. GBP/USD has plunged nearly 200 pips from the Tuesday swing high near 1.4400. UK retail sales figures could provide the pair with direction on Thursday. In the meantime, immediate support is located at 1.4145, the low from 12 April.