The US$ was choppy, without too much directional movement on Friday, while stocks finished their best week in over a year following the mixed US employment report. The NFP only increased by 148,000 jobs last month despite forecasts of gains of 190,000, while the figures for October and November were revised down, showing 9,000 fewer jobs created than previously reported. On the other hand, the average hourly earnings climbed by 9 cents, or 0.3% in December after gaining 0.1 % in November, lifting the annual increase in wages to 2.5% from 2.4%. The headline unemployment number remained unchanged at 4.1%. The commodity bloc currencies remained firm against the US$, while the Yen was weak through the whole of the Friday session, again under pressure while being used as a funding currency as long as risk sentiment remains intact, while the EU majors were relatively unchanged in choppy trade.
The coming week will be busy throughout, but mostly with secondary data. Highlights will include the EU Sentix Investor Confidence Survey (Monday), German Trade Balance, Current Account, and Industrial Production and EU Unemployment (Tue), China CPI, UK Manufacturing/Industrial Production (Wed), Australian Retail Sales, EU Non-Monetary Policy Meeting Minutes and US PPI (Thur) and finally, the busiest session of the week, which will feature the China Retail Sales and Trade Balance and, late in the day, the US Retail Sales and CPI (Fri). Have a good one.
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