- First release of key data was out of the UK Friday morning, and it proved another hammer blow for the UK economy, in what has been a really disappointing run of late. This time UK Manufacturing Production showed a decline of 0.9% in January, even worse than the -0.6% that had been expected.
- This weaker than expected print put the Pound on the back-foot all day. Sterling had opened the morning at 1.1472 versus the Euro before closing the day down at 1.1388; a fresh 7 week low.
- UK NIESR GDP estimate for the 3 months up to February was in line with expectations at 0.6%.
- The main event Friday afternoon was of course a raft of key US employment data, with every piece of data now crucial ahead of the Federal Reserve’s FOMC meeting on Wednesday 15th March. All in all you would suspect the data was robust enough to keep the Fed on track to that potential rate hike next week:
- Average Hourly Earnings m/m 0.2% (0.3% Exp)
- Non-Farm Employment Change 235K (196K Exp)
- Unemployment Rate 4.7% as expected.
- There was some strong jobs data out of Canada Friday afternoon:
- Employment Change 15.3K (0.6K Exp)
- Unemployment Rate 6.6% (6.8% Exp)
- The Euro rallied into the close of Friday’s trading as sources reported that the ECB had in fact discussed the prospect of whether they could raise interest rates before the end of their bond buying program. Worth noting however other reports suggested this discussion was very brief and little to no support was shown for it.
Over The Weekend
- Sterling rates appear to have been given a lift this morning, perhaps following David Davis’ comments over the weekend.
- Brexit Secretary Davis suggested the UK Government are working on contingencies should a deal not be reached with the EU, however he remains confident the right deal can be struck.
- Staying on the Brexit trail, and there are rumours that Theresa May is on the brink of triggering Article 50 and it could come as soon as Tuesday.
- No economic data of any note due for release today – standard Monday unfortunately.
- The only potential high impact event will be ECB President Draghi who is due to speak at 1.30pm.