Weekly Economic Update

For the week of March 6 – 10.

Fed Chair Janet Yellen seems to have confirmed that the Fed will be raising interest rates in March; speculators have the rise’s probability at 96%. Yellen said that assuming employment and inflation are still in line with the central bank’s expectations, an adjustment to the overnight rate will be appropriate in March. Yellen also stated that rate adjustments will be less gradual than in the past. Fed Vice-Chairman Stanley Fischer echoed his support of a rate hike: “there is almost no economic indicator that has come in badly in the last three months.”

China’s National People’s Congress announced a 2017 growth target of “around 6.5% or higher if possible,” compared to last year’s range of 6.5% – 7.0%.

Data releases in Canada this week will include international merchandise trade, housing starts, and employment. Friday’s employment release will follow a posting of 48.3K in January which was made up of 15.8K full-time positions and 32.4K part-time positions.

In the United States this week, releases are expected for factory and durable goods orders, trade balance, ADP employment change, wholesale inventories, and employment. Friday’s Nonfarm data release will be under close scrutiny leading into the March 15 Fed policy meeting, where investors are expecting the first rate hike of the year.

Source: bloomberg

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