Diary: RBA Meeting, Oz GDP, US Jobs Data

By Glenn Dyer | More Articles by Glenn Dyer

June starts with the focus still on Covid-19 and its cases are slowing in developed countries, progress towards medical solutions, the reopening of economies, and signs that economic activity is picking up.

There are a couple of central bank meetings (the RBA and European Central Bank are the most important) this week, as well as the release of the May surveys of manufacturing and service sector activity across the globe (US, China, Japan, the eurozone and Australia).

In Australia (see separate story) it’s the Reserve bank’s June policy decision tomorrow – no move in rates and then the March quarter GDP data on Wednesday.

As well there are the last bits of data for the national accounts tomorrow on the current account, business indicators, and government finances.

There’s also a host of April and May data for release on house prices, car sales, retail sales, trade and building approvals (the latter three for April).

Globally the major release will be America’s May jobless figure Friday night, Australian time.

The report is expected to show that the unemployment rate rose to 19.8% in May, smashing April’s record 14.7%, according to Reuters.

Non-farm payrolls are expected to drop by 7.4 million, adding to the 20.5 million jobs lost in April.

As well, the May surveys of activity in the US manufacturing and service sectors, due Monday and Thursday respectively, are likely to show small gains after their falls in April.

There are a few quarterly reports this week from struggling mid-range retailers such as Gap Inc and American Eagle Outfitters, as well as high-end groups like Tiffany & Co and Vail Resorts.

Fossil, another upscale retailer is down to report, as is G-111 Apparel which owns a wide range of well know n brands such as Levi Strauss, DKNY, Tommy Hilfiger, Guess?, Cole Haan and Dockers. Guess is also down to report this week.

Reports are also expected from packaged foods groups, Campbell Soup Jams and spread group, J Smucker.

US car sales data for May will be out today and tomorrow – the news will again be weak.

Thursday’s monthly meeting of the European Central Bank will be watched to see whether it increases its QE Pandemic Emergency Purchase Program from €750 billion to €1 trillion.

The AMP’s Chief Economist, Dr. Shane Oliver says the fund “will probably “ be increased as it is “too small, but it may decide to wait till its July meeting as so far, it’s only spent about a third of its current program.”

“Its response to the German Constitutional Court’s ruling on its QE program will also be watched.,” Dr. Oliver wrote.

On the data, front expect a rise in unemployment for April on Wednesday. retail sales figures for April on Friday will confirm a massive slide in household spending, except for foods.

Chinese business conditions surveys for May from the government and the private one from Caixin Magazine and Markit (today and Wednesday) will be watched for signs of further improvement.

Chinese May trade data on next Sunday 7 June is expected to show a fall in exports reflecting weak global conditions but an improvement in imports reflecting stronger domestic demand.

Japan (Friday) and South Korea (Today) provide GDP reports this week as well – Japan’s will be the second estimate after the first set of figures showed a second quarterly slide, dragging the country into yet another recession.

Glenn Dyer

About Glenn Dyer

Glenn Dyer has been a finance journalist and TV producer for more than 40 years. He has worked at Maxwell Newton Publications, Queensland Newspapers, AAP, The Australian Financial Review, The Nine Network and Crikey.

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