Good morning, traders; Welcome to our market week preview, where we take a look at the economic data, market news and headlines likely to have the biggest impact the price of gold this week and beyond, as well as other key correlated assets.
Gold prices have traded flat-to-slightly-higher this morning as the broader global marketplace seems to be getting off to a calm start to the week. How long the slower pace will last is uncertain, as we’re already seeing a pop of volatility in gold (as well as crude) lifting the yellow metal higher in a reaction to the morning’s new headlines around the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
For now, let’s take a look at the rest of the calendar ahead.
US Economic Data to Watch
Thursday, March 24 at 830am EDT // Initial Jobless Claims
[consensus est.: +211K // prev.: +214K]
As you can tell, it’s relatively quiet on the macro-data-front this week. We’ve covered some data points in the past like Durable Goods, which can (through applying positive or negative pressures on the US Dollar Index,) impact gold; however, that pressure has failed to follow through to gold markets in recent months so it’s dropped from our regular rotation. Initial Jobless Claims remain (most weeks) still, and there may be some added attention to the number—not just because it’s one of the only games in town, but because of the importance that Jerome Powell placed on the continued performance of the US labor market recovery as justification for the Fed taking such an aggressive (and possibly unconventional) fight to inflation. This function shouldn’t muddy the waters for gold prices’ traditional reaction: better-than-expected performance (a lower weekly number) likely is a headwind for gold, while unanticipated pops in the number of new unemployment claims could boost prices higher on Thursday.
FedSpeak this Week
The Fed delivered (somewhat more hawkishly) on expectations last week, hiking interest rates by +0.25% and setting the path for plenty more ahead. In what has to be one of the more densely-packed dockets of public appearance from FOMC officials, Fed watchers will be looking for more elaboration on the committee’s consensus projection now agreeing with calls for a total of seven hikes in 2022, and what kind of downside risks there are to such an aggressive tightening of monetary policy to battle 40-year highs in inflation.
Monday: Atlanta Fed President Raphael Bostic (non-voter) (8am EDT); Fed Chair Jerome Powell (FOMC voter) (12pm)
Tuesday: New York Fed President John Williams (FOMC voter) (1035am); Cleveland Fed President Loretta Mester (FOMC voter) (5pm)
Wednesday: Fed Chair Powell (8am); St. Louis Fed President James Bullard (FOMC voter) (3pm & 905pm)
Thursday: Minneapolis Fed President Neel Kashkari (non-voter) (830am EDT); Fed Governor Christopher Waller (FOMC voter) (910am); Chicago Fed President Charles Evans (non-voter) (950am)
Friday: NY President Williams (10am); Richmond Fed President Thomas Barkin (non-voter) (1130am)
And that’s how the week lays out ahead of us, traders. As always, I wish you all the very best of luck in your markets in the coming days, and I’ll look forward to seeing you all back here on Friday for our market-week wrap up.