There are a number of important economic releases on the U.S. calendar this week, but none more important than the Employment Situation Report for April that comes out on Friday. The consensus forecast is that nonfarm payrolls contracted by 21 million in April and the unemployment rate rose from 4.4% in March to more than 16% last month.
That consensus forecast on unemployment might actually be on the low side, but even still this is what it would look like from a historical perspective:
Other U.S. reports due out this week will cover factory orders (consensus forecast -9.1%), the trade balance (see our report next week for a recap of Q1 U.S. scrap exports), the ISM service sector index, labor productivity, and wholesale inventories. Overseas, we’ll get new reports on German industrial production, Chinese trade, and Japanese consumer spending, along with a number of PMI reports. On the monetary policy front, the Bank of England meets this week while the Financial Times reports “There is a key court ruling on the European Central Bank’s bond-buying plans and economic forecasts due on EU member states that will have a bearing on their eligibility for economic aid.” On the corporate front, ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steelmaker, is scheduled to release its earnings report this week. Investors will also be paying attention to the re-opening plans for a number of national economies and U.S. states. We hope you have a great week.