Friday May 4, 2018 - 14:39:22 GMT
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Fed Less Hawkish Than Expected. U.S. April Jobs Miss
John M. Bland, MBA, co-founder, Global-View.com
The Federal Reserve’s latest meeting fell last week on May 1-2. As expected, no changes in key rates were announced following the conference. Every other Fed meeting has a press conference afterwards, and the central bank has fallen into a pattern where policy changes are only announced at the meetings with press conferences. While in theory “no-press conference meetings” can see a policy change, this has not happened yet. My hope is that every meeting at some point will include an exchange with the press. Nevertheless, every meeting sees a formal statement from the Fed and there is a cottage industry of Fed watchers who parse every single word in the statement. While no change in rates was as widely anticipated, Markets had been expecting a more hawkish posture from the central bank this week. Afterwards, most focused on one word in the statement, “symmetric”, which referring to the inflation target. The word iwas key because in the latest month the preferred Fed inflation measure, Core Personal Consumption Deflator, in the latest month reached its target level of 2.00% y/y for the first time in years. In its meeting statement, the FOMC stated that “inflation on a 12-month basis is expected to run near the Committee's symmetric 2 percent objective over the medium term. Risks to the economic outlook appear roughly balanced.” The importance of the word “symmetric” is that the Fed is not viewing 2.00% as a ceiling on inflation that must be capped, instead they were saying that it is the middle of a range. Some inferred from the comments that the committee might be willing to let inflation to run “hot” for a while to establish an inflation floor. Also, many took note of the removal of the sentence "the economic outlook has strengthened in recent months” from the previous statement. They took this as an omen about the future course of the economy.
Eurozone Inflation (HICP) level Continues To Miss Its Target The European Central Bank (ECB) faces a worsening problem as headline Euro Area April inflation (HICP) fell to 1.2%. Furthermore, core inflation declined to 0.7% yr/yr, the weakest level in more than a year. The ECB HICP target is “just below 2.00%”. ECB President Draghi has a major challenge on his hands to reach the mandated inflation target. Concern about Euro-zone growth has been weighing on the EURUSD.
April 2018 U.S. Employment Report Disappointing April Employment data were a disappointment with payrolls showing a gain of only +164K in the month vs. an upwardly revised advance of 135K in March. The unemployment rate declined to 3.9%. The improvement partially reflected a fall in the Labor Participation rate to 62.8% vs. 62.9% 9n March. A falling Labor participation rate would not be a constructive development. Also Average Hourly Earnings data gained only 0.15% in the month vs. estimates of 0.20%. Bond yields fell on the news.
GVI Trading. Potential Price Risk Scale
AA: Major, A: High, B: Medium
Wed 9 May 2018
AFinal Mfg PMIs
AA 09:00 EZ- GDP
A 12:30 US- PPI
A 14:30 US- EIA Crude
A 21:00 NZ- RBNZ Policy Decision
Thu 10 May 2018
AFinal Service PMIs
AA 08:30 GB- Ind/Prod Output, Trade
AA 11:00 GB- Bank of England
AA 12:30 US- CPI
A 12:30 US- Weekly Jobless
Fri 11 May 2018
AFinal Service PMIs
AA 06:00 CA- Employment
A 14:00 US- Prelim University of Michigan
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