Connect with us


Key Events This Week: Summer Is Over; PMIs And Payrolls

Key Events This Week: Summer Is Over; PMIs And Payrolls



Key Events This Week: Summer Is Over; PMIs And Payrolls Tyler Durden Mon, 08/31/2020 - 09:43

As we move into September tomorrow, markets will turn their attention to a number of important data releases, including the PMI readings and the US jobs report. Otherwise, as DB's Henry Allen writes, the events calendar is somewhat quieter following Jackson Hole, with the only major central bank decision coming from Australia on Tuesday. Investors will also continue to pay close attention to coronavirus case numbers and the possibility of further restrictions, particularly in Europe where the numbers have risen in recent weeks.

As Allen notes, this week will see a number of high profile data releases, most notably with the release of the August PMIs from around the world, as well as the ISM readings from the US, which will give us an indication of how the global economy has fared through the month. We already have some idea of how these might pan out from some of the flash readings, with the Euro Area seeing a loss of momentum into August as its composite PMI fell from 54.9 to 51.6. The UK saw a stronger move as it rose to 60.3, but that simply reflected the UK climbing out of a more protracted downturn rather than a higher level of activity. Remember with the PMIs that they’re diffusion indices, so are simply asking respondents whether conditions are better or worse than the previous month, and don’t capture by themselves how rapidly activity is expanding or contracting.

The other top-tier release comes from the US jobs report on Friday, which will also have a reasonable amount of political significance, given it’s the penultimate monthly jobs report before the presidential election on November 3. In terms of what to expect, the consensus on Bloomberg is currently looking for a further +1.518m increase in nonfarm payrolls in August, which if realised would bring the total growth in nonfarm payrolls to +10.797m over the last four months. However, even if that was achieved, that would still mean that less than half of the -22.16m jobs lost in March and April had been recovered, so there’s still a long road back before the labour market fully recovers to where it was pre-Covid.

Central banks will take something of a back seat this week following the Jackson Hole symposium and the announcement of the results of the Federal Reserve’s policy review framework. The only G20 policy decision to expect comes from the Reserve Bank of Australia on Tuesday, where the view is that policy will remain unchanged, with the cash rate and three-year AGS target remaining at 0.25%. Meanwhile, with recent high-frequency data looking to have mostly confirmed their expectations on the cost of Melbourne’s second lockdown, the RBA’s economic assessment is also expected to see little change.

Otherwise from central banks there isn’t a great deal on the calendar, though both Vice Chair Clarida and Governor Brainard will be speaking on the new monetary policy framework. We’ll also get the release of the Fed’s Beige Book which is published 8 times per year.

In the background, it’ll be important for investors to keep an eye on coronavirus case numbers, which have risen in Europe in particular in recent days. For instance here in the UK, the 1,522 cases reported yesterday were the highest in over two months, while France just reported its worst 24 hours since late March, with 6,111 cases. This rise in cases comes as the start of September next week will see schools go back from their summer holidays in a number of countries. Meanwhile governments face the continued challenge of seeking to revive their economies and relax restrictions whilst avoiding a new outbreak of infections.

Day-by-day calendar of events courtesy of Deutsche Bank


  • Data: Japan preliminary July industrial production, July retail sales, housing starts, China August composite PMI, manufacturing PMI, non-manufacturing PMI, Italy final Q2 GDP, preliminary August CPI, Germany preliminary August CPI, US August Dallas Fed manufacturing activity
  • Central Banks: Fed Vice Chair Clarida and Bostic speak
  • Other: UK bank holiday


  • Data: August manufacturing PMIs for Australia, Indonesia, South Korea, Japan, China, India, Russia, Turkey, Italy, France, Germany, Euro Area, UK, South Africa, Brazil, Canada, US and Mexico, Japan July jobless rate, August vehicle sales, Germany August unemployment change, Italy preliminary July unemployment rate, UK July consumer credit, mortgage approvals, M4 money supply, Euro Area July unemployment rate, August CPI estimate, US August ISM manufacturing, July construction spending
  • Central Banks: Reserve Bank of Australia monetary policy decision, Fed’s Brainard and ECB’s Knot speaks


  • Data: Japan August monetary base, Euro Area July PPI, US weekly MBA mortgage applications, ADP employment change, July factory orders, final July durable goods orders, nondefence capital goods orders ex air, Canada Q2 labour productivity
  • Central Banks: Federal Reserve releases Beige Book, Fed’s Williams, Mester and ECB’s Weidmann speak


  • Data: August services and composite PMIs for Australia, Japan, China, India, Russia, Italy, France, Germany, Euro Area, UK, Brazil and US, Euro Area July retail sales, Canada July international merchandise trade, US weekly initial jobless claims, continuing claims, July trade balance, August ISM services index 


  • Data: Germany July factory orders, August construction PMI, UK August construction PMI, Canada August net change in  mployment, unemployment rate, US August change in nonfarm payrolls, unemployment rate, average hourly earnings, labour force participation rate

Finally, looking at just the US, Goldman notes that the key economic data releases this week are the ISM manufacturing index on Tuesday and the employment report on Friday. There are several speaking engagements by Fed officials this week

Monday, August 31

  • 09:00 AM Fed Vice Chair Clarida (FOMC voter) speaks: Federal Reserve Board Vice Chair Richard Clarida will participate in a virtual discussion on the Fed’s framework review hosted by the Peterson Institute. Prepared text and questions from a moderator are expected.
  • 10:30 AM Atlanta Fed President Bostic (FOMC non-voter) speaks: Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic will speak about philanthropy and inclusion at a virtual event. Prepared text is not expected. Audience Q&A is expected.

Tuesday, September 1

  • 09:45 AM Markit US manufacturing PMI, August final (consensus 53.6, last 53.6)
  • 10:00 AM ISM manufacturing index, August (GS 55.0, consensus 54.5, last 54.2): We expect the ISM manufacturing index to increase by 0.8pt to 55.0 in August amid continued industrial rebound after rising 1.6pt in July. Our manufacturing survey tracker rose by 1.5pp to 55.6 in August.
  • 10:00 AM Construction spending, July (GS +0.9%, consensus +1.1%, last -0.7%): We estimate a 0.9% increase in construction spending in July following four consecutive monthly declines.
  • 01:00 PM Fed Governor Brainard (FOMC voter) speaks: Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard will participate in a virtual discussion on the Fed’s framework review hosted by the Brookings Institution. Prepared text and questions from a moderator are expected.

Wednesday, September 2

  • 08:15 AM ADP employment report, August (GS +1,600k, consensus +950k, last +167k): We expect a 1,600k gain in ADP payroll employment in August, reflecting a boost from lagged payrolls and lower jobless claims.
  • 10:00 AM Factory orders, July (GS +6.1%, consensus +6.0%, last +6.2%); Durable goods orders, July final (last +11.2%); Durable goods orders ex-transportation, July final (last +2.4%); Core capital goods orders, July final (last +1.9%); Core capital goods shipments, July final (last +2.4%): We estimate factory orders increased by 6.1% in July following a 6.2% increase in June. Durable goods orders rose by 11.2% in the July advance report.
  • 10:00 AM New York Fed President Williams (FOMC voter) speaks: New York Fed President John Williams will speak during a webinar on effects of the coronavirus pandemic. Prepared text and audience Q&A are expected.
  • 02:00 PM Beige Book, August FOMC meeting period: The Fed’s Beige Book is a summary of regional economic anecdotes from the 12 Federal Reserve districts. In the August Beige Book, we look for anecdotes related to growth, labor markets, wages, price inflation, and the economic impacts of the ongoing coronavirus outbreak.
  • 06:00 PM San Francisco Fed President Daly (FOMC non-voter) speaks: San Francisco Fed President Mary Daly will give a speech on the economy hosted by Harvard University. Prepared text is not expected. Audience and media Q&A are expected.

Thursday, September 3

  • 08:30 AM Initial jobless claims, week ended August 29 (GS 930k, consensus 950k, last 1,006k); Continuing jobless claims, week ended August 22 (consensus 14,000k, last 14,535k); We estimate initial jobless claims dropped to 930k in the week ended August 29.
  • 08:30 AM Nonfarm productivity, Q2 final (GS +7.4%, consensus +7.4%, last +7.3%); Unit labor costs, Q2 final (GS +12.0%, consensus +12.1%, last +12.2%): We estimate nonfarm productivity was revised up by one tenth to +7.4% (qoq ar) in Q2. We estimate growth in Q2 unit labor costs – compensation per hour divided by output per hour – was revised down to +12.0% in Q2.
  • 08:30 AM Trade balance, July (GS -$58.0bn, consensus -$57.0bn, last -$50.7bn): We estimate the trade deficit increased by $7.3bn in July, reflecting a sharp increase in the goods trade deficit.
  • 09:45 AM Markit US services PMI, August final (consensus 54.7, last 54.8)
  • 12:30 PM Chicago Fed President Evans (FOMC non-voter) speaks: Chicago Fed President Charles Evans will speak on monetary policy and the economy at an event hosted by the Lakeshore Chamber of Commerce.

Friday, September 4

  • 08:30 AM Nonfarm payroll employment, August (GS +1,900k, consensus +1,400k, last +1,763k); Private payroll employment, August (GS +1,650k, consensus +1,275k, last +1,462k); Average hourly earnings (mom), August (GS -0.1%, consensus 0.0%, last +0.2%); Average hourly earnings (yoy), August (GS +4.3%, consensus +4.5%, last +4.8%); Unemployment rate, August (GS 9.8%, consensus 9.8%, last 10.2%): We estimate nonfarm payroll growth rose +1.9mn in August after +1.8mn in July and +4.8mn in June. The resurgence of the coronavirus did not produce a meaningful rebound in layoffs in the Sunbelt, and nationwide continuing claims fell by 2.2mn from survey week to survey week (adjusted by GS). Because of measurement issues with the BLS birth-death model, we also expect the establishment survey to better capture business reopenings and gross hiring than the mid-summer business closures resulting from the virus. We also expect a 250k boost to government payrolls from Census canvassing activities (we estimate private payrolls rose 1.65mn).
  • Because of difficulty measuring temporary business closures in the establishment survey, we note scope for a relatively smaller rise in the household employment measure (which surveys employees directly). Based on this and a possible increase in the labor force participation rate, we estimate the unemployment rate declined by four tenths to 9.8%. We estimate average hourly earnings declined 0.1% month-over-month, lowering the year-on-year rate by five tenths to 4.3%. This forecast reflects a continuing unwind of the composition shift from lower to higher paid workers, partially offset by positive calendar effects.

Source: Deutsche Bank, Goldman, BofA

Read More

Continue Reading


Beloved mall retailer files Chapter 7 bankruptcy, will liquidate

The struggling chain has given up the fight and will close hundreds of stores around the world.



It has been a brutal period for several popular retailers. The fallout from the covid pandemic and a challenging economic environment have pushed numerous chains into bankruptcy with Tuesday Morning, Christmas Tree Shops, and Bed Bath & Beyond all moving from Chapter 11 to Chapter 7 bankruptcy liquidation.

In all three of those cases, the companies faced clear financial pressures that led to inventory problems and vendors demanding faster, or even upfront payment. That creates a sort of inevitability.

Related: Beloved retailer finds life after bankruptcy, new famous owner

When a retailer faces financial pressure it sets off a cycle where vendors become wary of selling them items. That leads to barren shelves and no ability for the chain to sell its way out of its financial problems. 

Once that happens bankruptcy generally becomes the only option. Sometimes that means a Chapter 11 filing which gives the company a chance to negotiate with its creditors. In some cases, deals can be worked out where vendors extend longer terms or even forgive some debts, and banks offer an extension of loan terms.

In other cases, new funding can be secured which assuages vendor concerns or the company might be taken over by its vendors. Sometimes, as was the case with David's Bridal, a new owner steps in, adds new money, and makes deals with creditors in order to give the company a new lease on life.

It's rare that a retailer moves directly into Chapter 7 bankruptcy and decides to liquidate without trying to find a new source of funding.

Mall traffic has varied depending upon the type of mall.

Image source: Getty Images

The Body Shop has bad news for customers  

The Body Shop has been in a very public fight for survival. Fears began when the company closed half of its locations in the United Kingdom. That was followed by a bankruptcy-style filing in Canada and an abrupt closure of its U.S. stores on March 4.

"The Canadian subsidiary of the global beauty and cosmetics brand announced it has started restructuring proceedings by filing a Notice of Intention (NOI) to Make a Proposal pursuant to the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (Canada). In the same release, the company said that, as of March 1, 2024, The Body Shop US Limited has ceased operations," Chain Store Age reported.

A message on the company's U.S. website shared a simple message that does not appear to be the entire story.

"We're currently undergoing planned maintenance, but don't worry we're due to be back online soon."

That same message is still on the company's website, but a new filing makes it clear that the site is not down for maintenance, it's down for good.

The Body Shop files for Chapter 7 bankruptcy

While the future appeared bleak for The Body Shop, fans of the brand held out hope that a savior would step in. That's not going to be the case. 

The Body Shop filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy in the United States.

"The US arm of the ethical cosmetics group has ceased trading at its 50 outlets. On Saturday (March 9), it filed for Chapter 7 insolvency, under which assets are sold off to clear debts, putting about 400 jobs at risk including those in a distribution center that still holds millions of dollars worth of stock," The Guardian reported.

After its closure in the United States, the survival of the brand remains very much in doubt. About half of the chain's stores in the United Kingdom remain open along with its Australian stores. 

The future of those stores remains very much in doubt and the chain has shared that it needs new funding in order for them to continue operating.

The Body Shop did not respond to a request for comment from TheStreet.   

Read More

Continue Reading


Are Voters Recoiling Against Disorder?

Are Voters Recoiling Against Disorder?

Authored by Michael Barone via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The headlines coming out of the Super…



Are Voters Recoiling Against Disorder?

Authored by Michael Barone via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The headlines coming out of the Super Tuesday primaries have got it right. Barring cataclysmic changes, Donald Trump and Joe Biden will be the Republican and Democratic nominees for president in 2024.

(Left) President Joe Biden delivers remarks on canceling student debt at Culver City Julian Dixon Library in Culver City, Calif., on Feb. 21, 2024. (Right) Republican presidential candidate and former U.S. President Donald Trump stands on stage during a campaign event at Big League Dreams Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nev., on Jan. 27, 2024. (Mario Tama/Getty Images; David Becker/Getty Images)

With Nikki Haley’s withdrawal, there will be no more significantly contested primaries or caucuses—the earliest both parties’ races have been over since something like the current primary-dominated system was put in place in 1972.

The primary results have spotlighted some of both nominees’ weaknesses.

Donald Trump lost high-income, high-educated constituencies, including the entire metro area—aka the Swamp. Many but by no means all Haley votes there were cast by Biden Democrats. Mr. Trump can’t afford to lose too many of the others in target states like Pennsylvania and Michigan.

Majorities and large minorities of voters in overwhelmingly Latino counties in Texas’s Rio Grande Valley and some in Houston voted against Joe Biden, and even more against Senate nominee Rep. Colin Allred (D-Texas).

Returns from Hispanic precincts in New Hampshire and Massachusetts show the same thing. Mr. Biden can’t afford to lose too many Latino votes in target states like Arizona and Georgia.

When Mr. Trump rode down that escalator in 2015, commentators assumed he’d repel Latinos. Instead, Latino voters nationally, and especially the closest eyewitnesses of Biden’s open-border policy, have been trending heavily Republican.

High-income liberal Democrats may sport lawn signs proclaiming, “In this house, we believe ... no human is illegal.” The logical consequence of that belief is an open border. But modest-income folks in border counties know that flows of illegal immigrants result in disorder, disease, and crime.

There is plenty of impatience with increased disorder in election returns below the presidential level. Consider Los Angeles County, America’s largest county, with nearly 10 million people, more people than 40 of the 50 states. It voted 71 percent for Mr. Biden in 2020.

Current returns show county District Attorney George Gascon winning only 21 percent of the vote in the nonpartisan primary. He’ll apparently face Republican Nathan Hochman, a critic of his liberal policies, in November.

Gascon, elected after the May 2020 death of counterfeit-passing suspect George Floyd in Minneapolis, is one of many county prosecutors supported by billionaire George Soros. His policies include not charging juveniles as adults, not seeking higher penalties for gang membership or use of firearms, and bringing fewer misdemeanor cases.

The predictable result has been increased car thefts, burglaries, and personal robberies. Some 120 assistant district attorneys have left the office, and there’s a backlog of 10,000 unprosecuted cases.

More than a dozen other Soros-backed and similarly liberal prosecutors have faced strong opposition or have left office.

St. Louis prosecutor Kim Gardner resigned last May amid lawsuits seeking her removal, Milwaukee’s John Chisholm retired in January, and Baltimore’s Marilyn Mosby was defeated in July 2022 and convicted of perjury in September 2023. Last November, Loudoun County, Virginia, voters (62 percent Biden) ousted liberal Buta Biberaj, who declined to prosecute a transgender student for assault, and in June 2022 voters in San Francisco (85 percent Biden) recalled famed radical Chesa Boudin.

Similarly, this Tuesday, voters in San Francisco passed ballot measures strengthening police powers and requiring treatment of drug-addicted welfare recipients.

In retrospect, it appears the Floyd video, appearing after three months of COVID-19 confinement, sparked a frenzied, even crazed reaction, especially among the highly educated and articulate. One fatal incident was seen as proof that America’s “systemic racism” was worse than ever and that police forces should be defunded and perhaps abolished.

2020 was “the year America went crazy,” I wrote in January 2021, a year in which police funding was actually cut by Democrats in New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, and Denver. A year in which young New York Times (NYT) staffers claimed they were endangered by the publication of Sen. Tom Cotton’s (R-Ark.) opinion article advocating calling in military forces if necessary to stop rioting, as had been done in Detroit in 1967 and Los Angeles in 1992. A craven NYT publisher even fired the editorial page editor for running the article.

Evidence of visible and tangible discontent with increasing violence and its consequences—barren and locked shelves in Manhattan chain drugstores, skyrocketing carjackings in Washington, D.C.—is as unmistakable in polls and election results as it is in daily life in large metropolitan areas. Maybe 2024 will turn out to be the year even liberal America stopped acting crazy.

Chaos and disorder work against incumbents, as they did in 1968 when Democrats saw their party’s popular vote fall from 61 percent to 43 percent.

Views expressed in this article are opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of The Epoch Times or ZeroHedge.

Tyler Durden Sat, 03/09/2024 - 23:20

Read More

Continue Reading


Veterans Affairs Kept COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Place Without Evidence

Veterans Affairs Kept COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Place Without Evidence

Authored by Zachary Stieber via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),




Veterans Affairs Kept COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate In Place Without Evidence

Authored by Zachary Stieber via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) reviewed no data when deciding in 2023 to keep its COVID-19 vaccine mandate in place.

Doses of a COVID-19 vaccine in Washington in a file image. (Jacquelyn Martin/Pool/AFP via Getty Images)

VA Secretary Denis McDonough said on May 1, 2023, that the end of many other federal mandates “will not impact current policies at the Department of Veterans Affairs.”

He said the mandate was remaining for VA health care personnel “to ensure the safety of veterans and our colleagues.”

Mr. McDonough did not cite any studies or other data. A VA spokesperson declined to provide any data that was reviewed when deciding not to rescind the mandate. The Epoch Times submitted a Freedom of Information Act for “all documents outlining which data was relied upon when establishing the mandate when deciding to keep the mandate in place.”

The agency searched for such data and did not find any.

The VA does not even attempt to justify its policies with science, because it can’t,” Leslie Manookian, president and founder of the Health Freedom Defense Fund, told The Epoch Times.

“The VA just trusts that the process and cost of challenging its unfounded policies is so onerous, most people are dissuaded from even trying,” she added.

The VA’s mandate remains in place to this day.

The VA’s website claims that vaccines “help protect you from getting severe illness” and “offer good protection against most COVID-19 variants,” pointing in part to observational data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that estimate the vaccines provide poor protection against symptomatic infection and transient shielding against hospitalization.

There have also been increasing concerns among outside scientists about confirmed side effects like heart inflammation—the VA hid a safety signal it detected for the inflammation—and possible side effects such as tinnitus, which shift the benefit-risk calculus.

President Joe Biden imposed a slate of COVID-19 vaccine mandates in 2021. The VA was the first federal agency to implement a mandate.

President Biden rescinded the mandates in May 2023, citing a drop in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations. His administration maintains the choice to require vaccines was the right one and saved lives.

“Our administration’s vaccination requirements helped ensure the safety of workers in critical workforces including those in the healthcare and education sectors, protecting themselves and the populations they serve, and strengthening their ability to provide services without disruptions to operations,” the White House said.

Some experts said requiring vaccination meant many younger people were forced to get a vaccine despite the risks potentially outweighing the benefits, leaving fewer doses for older adults.

By mandating the vaccines to younger people and those with natural immunity from having had COVID, older people in the U.S. and other countries did not have access to them, and many people might have died because of that,” Martin Kulldorff, a professor of medicine on leave from Harvard Medical School, told The Epoch Times previously.

The VA was one of just a handful of agencies to keep its mandate in place following the removal of many federal mandates.

“At this time, the vaccine requirement will remain in effect for VA health care personnel, including VA psychologists, pharmacists, social workers, nursing assistants, physical therapists, respiratory therapists, peer specialists, medical support assistants, engineers, housekeepers, and other clinical, administrative, and infrastructure support employees,” Mr. McDonough wrote to VA employees at the time.

This also includes VA volunteers and contractors. Effectively, this means that any Veterans Health Administration (VHA) employee, volunteer, or contractor who works in VHA facilities, visits VHA facilities, or provides direct care to those we serve will still be subject to the vaccine requirement at this time,” he said. “We continue to monitor and discuss this requirement, and we will provide more information about the vaccination requirements for VA health care employees soon. As always, we will process requests for vaccination exceptions in accordance with applicable laws, regulations, and policies.”

The version of the shots cleared in the fall of 2022, and available through the fall of 2023, did not have any clinical trial data supporting them.

A new version was approved in the fall of 2023 because there were indications that the shots not only offered temporary protection but also that the level of protection was lower than what was observed during earlier stages of the pandemic.

Ms. Manookian, whose group has challenged several of the federal mandates, said that the mandate “illustrates the dangers of the administrative state and how these federal agencies have become a law unto themselves.”

Tyler Durden Sat, 03/09/2024 - 22:10

Read More

Continue Reading