The last NFP left markets reeling – or at least USD traders. With hurricane Harvey decimating the Gulf Coast disrupting oil refineries and displacing hundreds of thousands of people – a 33,000 drop shouldn’t have been a surprise – but markets still thought that the number should have been an addition of 90,000 jobs. This month might be different as the last GDP surpassed the 2.5% expectations coming in at 3.0%.
As market wait for the NFP though, the Trump administration is once again embroiled in scandal, Manafort, Trump’s former campaign chairman, was indicted under the suspicion of being involved with Russian interference with the 2016 US Presidential elections. George Papadopoulos also pleaded guilty that he had lied to the FBI.
And markets took notice, with the launch of Mueller’s investigation (the head of the Special Counsel Investigation of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. elections) USD dropped 0.5% against many of its other major currency counterparts. It is unclear at the moment how deep the investigation will probe, but according to Mueller, this is just the beginning of a long-scoped examination into the matter.
Adding to the convoluted mess, Trump is ceaselessly chiming in via Twitter and trying to push through a tax reform bill (unrelated to the aforementioned twitter storm), which seeks to change some significant items including how 401Ks (retirement funds which contributions can be tax exempt until future withdrawal) are taxed. Of course this reform comes with hard Democrat resistance (like the majority of the Trump administration bills until now). If markets react the same way they did when previous Trump-bill were thrown out, the dollar may have hard days ahead of it.
On Tuesday the American Chamber of Commerce in China, went on record saying they were apprehensive about the White House’s preparedness for their upcoming meeting in China. The meetings will take place in November and the lobby wants the Trump delegation to speak about exclusion and market discrimination by Chinese authorities against foreign countries.
Back to the NFP though, at the moment projections are expecting job additions to recover from the -33K blow last month, reaching 300K but with unemployment remaining at 4.2%. Considering everything else that is going on, the market won’t only be watching the release of the NFP.