Week ahead: BoE rate decision, EU services and manufacturing PMIs, US jobs data

Suban Abdulla
·5 min read
Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey poses for a photograph on the first day of his new role at the central bank in London on March 16, 2020. (Photo by Tolga AKMEN / POOL / AFP) (Photo by TOLGA AKMEN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images)
Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey poses for a photograph on the first day of his new role at the central bank in London on March 16, 2020. Photo: TOLGA AKMEN/POOL/AFP via Getty Images

Investors can expect thinner volumes in activity in the early parts of the week, as UK markets are closed on Monday for Bank Holiday and those in China and Japan will not reopen until Thursday for public holidays.

The spotlight will be on the Bank of England (BOE) as it meets to decide on policy on Thursday.

Keeping up with the central bank theme, rate-setters at the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) will announce the latest interest rate decision on Tuesday, the RBA is not expected to reduce monetary stimulus. 

There will also be speeches from Federal Reserve chair Jerome Powell and European Central Bank president Christine Lagarde.

Across the pond, the non-farms jobs report will be a stand out as optimism grows in the US economy, thanks to a successful COVID vaccine rollout, falling jobless claims, rising retail sales and surging PMI data.

In Europe, the services and manufacturing sectors will be front and centre following news of a double-dip recession in the Eurozone in the first quarter, investors will closely watch for any signs of a recovery.

A server carries a tray of drinks from a pub in the Grassmarket in Edinburgh, as beer gardens, non-essential shops, restaurants and cafes, along with swimming pools, libraries and museums in Scotland reopen today after lockdown restrictions have eased. Picture date: Monday April 26, 2021. (Photo by Andrew Milligan/PA Images via Getty Images)
A server carries a tray of drinks from a pub. Beer gardens, non-essential shops, restaurants and cafes, along with swimming pools, libraries and museums reopened on 12 April in England and 26 April in Scotland. Photo: Andrew Milligan/PA Images via Getty Images

UK: BoE interest rate decision, manufacturing, services and construction PMIs, Scotland elections

It is a shorter week for the UK this week with markets closed on Bank Holiday Monday. 

But, investors will closely watch for any tapering talk from the BoE on Thursday, especially since it is also releasing its latest quarterly Monetary Policy Report this month.

All eyes will be on whether the central bank will take a more hawkish stance amid improvement in scientific data and rising optimism over the re-opening of Britain's economy.

This is against a backdrop of, flash manufacturing and services PMIs both climbing above 60.0, retail sales jumping 5.4% in March and rising house prices ahead of the stamp duty holiday expiry at the end of June.

In another sign of rising inflationary pressures in the economy, figures released on Friday showed, house prices rose +2.1% month-over-month according to Nationwide

Despite that, analysts expect the BoE to maintain rates at 0.1%.

"No changes to monetary policy are expected, and the recent pause in 10 gilt yields is also likely to have prompted a sigh of relief given concerns that a sharp rise in inflation expectations might warrant some form of response from the central bank in terms of reducing the amount of stimulus in the economy," said Michael Hewson chief market analyst at CMC Markets. 

The outcome of the Scottish elections could also impact how sterling performs as the likelihood of another referendum on independence grows.  

Data wise, the final manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) is joined by the mortgage approvals and consumer credit figures on Tuesday. On Thursday, the final services PMI, with construction PMI closing out the week on Friday. 

Key company results:

  • Boohoo (BOO.L) — finals (Wednesday) 

  • ITV (ITV.L) — Q1 (Wednesday)

  • Next (NXT.L), Rio Tinto (RIO.L) — Q1 (Thursday) 

  • Trainline (TRN.L) — finals (Thursday) 

  • InterContinental Hotels (IHG.L), IAG (IAG.L) — Q1 (Friday)

WATCH: Powell Pushes Back Against Summers' Inflation Warnings

US: Non-farm pay-rolls, Jerome Powell speech

There is more stress on the main macro event across the Atlantic —the non-farm jobs report, especially after Federal Reserve stressed it will need to see a "string" of strong job reports before aid is cut. 

Investors will be keen to see whether the jobs market continued to rebound strongly in April after the US added 916,000 jobs in March. Economists are expecting a 950,000 increase this time. 

Powell said "substantial further progress" is needed in regards to full employment and the 2% inflation target before the stimulus taps are turned off.

Last week, the policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) held interest rates at near-zero as part of its commitment to aggressive economic stimulus.

The central bank said the coronavirus vaccine rollout had improved the US economy, adding that it remains optimistic about the rebound. It described the most adversely affected industries as having “shown improvement.”

New data, last week showed the US economy rebounded more quickly in the latest three months thanks to two additional rounds of COVID-19 relief stimulus from Washington.

The American economy grew 6.4% in first quarter of this year. 

It was the second-fastest gross domestic product (GDP) growth pace since the third quarter of 2003 and followed a rate of 4.3% in the final quarter of 2020. 

Other than that, there is the latest factory orders data on Friday, the final services PMI and ADP nonfarm employment change reading on Wednesday, and the usual Thursday jobless claims figure.

Eurozone: Manufacturing and services PMIs, Germany factory orders, retail sales

LISBON, PORTUGAL - APRIL 19: Shoppers walk with Zara bags in Rua Garrett on the first day of deconfinement's third phase with shops reopening with limitations and restaurants allowed to serve patrons indoors during the COVID-19 Coronavirus pandemic on April 19, 2021 in Lisbon, Portugal. According to updated data from the General Direction of Health (DGS) Portugal confirmed a total of 831,221 infections and 16,946 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic. The government has relaxed confinement and renewed the country's state of emergency until April 30.  (Photo by Horacio Villalobos#Corbis/Corbis via Getty Images)
Germany retail sales are out on Monday, but consumer spending was dented with the country in lockdown in March. Photo: Horacio Villalobos#Corbis/Corbis via Getty

The Eurozone has a host of data on the slate, with retail sales, services and manufacturing figures as well as factory orders from its biggest economy — Germany. 

There is some positive news however, as it appears that coronavirus infections across most Western European countries are reducing as vaccinations are picking up pace. 

Looking at this week's economic data, Germany retail sales are out on Monday, but consumer spending was dented with the country in lockdown in March.  

Wednesday will see the release of the services PMIs and the latest EU economic forecasts. This is followed by Germany factory orders and region-wide retail sales on Thursday, and German industrial production and Italian retail sales on Friday.

WATCH:What is inflation and why is it important?