The US dollar weakened last week, losing ground against a basket of trade-weighted peers amid rising oil prices and US equities. The US dollar index closed at 96.92 on Friday, down 0.7% on the week.
The US dollar will have the opportunity to redeem itself this week, as a steady stream of high profile data make headlines. Below is a brief overview of the major US releases for the trading week ending May 1.
Dallas Fed Manufacturing Business Index (Apr): The monthly indicator of business activity in Texas is forecast to improve to -12.0 form -17.4 in April. The production index, which measures Texas’ manufacturing conditions, fell to -5.2 in March, its first negative reading in almost two years.
Conference Board Consumer Confidence Index: The closely followed index of US consumer confidence is forecast to improve to 103.0 in April from 101.3 in March. The index set a seven-and-a-half year high of 103.8 in January.
Federal Reserve Rate Statement: The Federal Open Market Committee wraps up its April policy meetings on Wednesday. The official interest rate statement is expected to show no changes to monetary policy, although could give clues about the projected path of monetary policy over the next several months.
2015 US First Quarter GDP: The Department of Commerce is expected to show the US economy expanded just 1% in the first quarter, mirroring last year’s disappointing start. The sharp slowdown is likely to reinforce the Fed’s neutral rate statement.
Personal Income and Outlays: This closely followed report gives a monthly breakdown of personal income and consumer spending growth. Personal income is forecast to rise 0.2% in March, while consumer spending is expected to rise 0.5%. The core PCE price index – the Fed’s preferred measure of inflation – is forecast to rise 0.2%.
Chicago Purchasing Managers Index (Apr): The Chicago PMI index, which gauges business conditions in the Midwestern United States, is forecast to climb to 50.0 from 46.3 in March.
ISM Manufacturing PMI (Apr): The US manufacturing industry is forecast to rebound in April, according to the Institute for Supply Management. The index is forecast to rise to 52.0 from 51.5 in March.
US dollar traders should also keep an eye on European data, which could significantly impact dollar pairs moving forward. Below is a brief summary of this week’s key European data.
- GBP Q1 Gross Domestic Product (YoY) (Monday)
- EUR Germany Consumer Price Index (Wednesday)
- EUR Germany Unemployment Rate (Apr) (Thursday)
- EUR Eurozone Consumer Price Index (Thursday)