This week has been characterized by many market movers publication that move the stock markets around the world, some more or less than others.
In United States, were published some labor market data on Friday. New jobs in January have largely disappointed the analyst expectations. On the other hand, the unemployment rate went down to lows of March 2008 and the average hourly wage rises again.
Non Farm payrolls show an increase of 151.000 units, against the strong results of the previous month of 262.000 units. This market mover measures the change in the number of people who found employment during the previous month, excluding the agricultural and state workers. For the United States is a very important leading indicator of consumer purchasing power, which has consequences on the entire economic structure of a country.
The average hourly wage showed a rise of 0.5%, against the result of the previous month at 0.0%. The average amount of working hours per week increased from 34.5 to 34.6.
The unemployment rate in January, however, continues to fall and stood at 4.9%, down from the result of the previous month.
All this has shown conflicting results on the US labor market that could add concern about the health of one of the world’s largest economies. In fact, European stock markets went down because of volatility on the US data publications and after an initial tack to the downside, they managed to return in a positive territory.
Even the euro-dollar exchange rate has suffered the same fate. At the time of publication it began to rise and then it came back in the 1.1170-1.1200 range losing what it has conquered before.
Who knows if the Federal Reserve will decide to raise the interest rates during its next meeting in March. The market it is slowly convincing itself of that.
Moving to Europe, on the 4th of February the Bank of England met to discuss about the interest rate. They left it permanently to 0.5% without any surprise for the analysts.
The Bank of England, however, cut the forecasts on the growth, admitting that UK is not proceeding at the pace previously estimated. The BoE now expects a GDP increase of 2.2% in 2016, down from the previous 2.5% forecast of three months ago.
Eventually, on the same date, there was also the meeting of the European Commission. They discussed about the growth of the entire Eurozone, admitting that “Eurozone economy will continue to grow moderately in 2016”. It expects a growth of 1.7% but it warned on the increase of “major challenges” to overcome.
Last but not least, the next two weeks will take place the celebration for the Chinese New Year. Chinese stock markets will be close only one week, though: from the 8th to the 12nd of February. Publications of market movers or latest news on economic developments in China and Hong Kong have not been scheduled for next week.
Chinese New Year is also celebrated in Korea, Mongolia, Nepal, Bhutan, Vietnam and Japan.
Japanese stock market will be close only on the 11st of February because of the celebration for the National Foundation. It is the first day of the year calculated on the lunisolar calendar.