Fed Speakers in Focus After Friday’s Jobs Data

(AFP Photo/SAUL LOEB)

(AFP Photo/SAUL LOEB)

US futures are pointing a little higher on Monday, with the spill over from the July jobs report perhaps providing a small boost to sentiment at the start of the week.
 

Futures Buoyed By Jobs Data

The jobs report was quite well received on Friday despite suffering the same pitfall that has plagued the US recovery for years: inadequate wage growth. With this still lacking, the inflation numbers are unlikely to dramatically improve and the number of those within the Federal Reserve that are uncomfortable with the pace of tightening could grow. Investors are already unconvinced that we’ll see another rate hike this year and unless something changes on wages and inflation, I don’t see that changing any time soon.
 

Fed Speakers Have Their Say as Wage Growth Continues to Drag

Two of the more dovish members of the Fed that have already voiced concerns about this will be appearing on Monday. Neel Kashkari and James Bullard are both scheduled to speak today and it’d be surprising if Friday’s numbers eased their concerns. That said, with only Kashkari being a voting member of the FOMC and a known dove, there may be little to take away from the comments unless of course he either strikes an unlikely hawkish tone or suggests others are coming around to his way of thinking.
 

Oil Lower Ahead of Producers Meeting in Abu Dhabi

Oil is more than 1% lower so far today as oil producers taking part in the output cut meet in Abu Dhabi to discuss compliance issues that could threaten the deal. Compliance until now has actually been very strong, much stronger in fact than many anticipated, but the longer the cuts last, the more challenging it is likely to become, especially if oil prices don’t recover to the levels that officials expected.

Still, while oil is down on the day, it’s still trading near a two-month high and has actually stabilized around $50 a barrel in WTI and $52.50 in Brent for more than a week. There are small intra-day moves but should compliance become a bigger issue, then prices could plummet once again.

This week is looking a quieter on the economic data side, with most of the notable releases coming later on, including all-important US inflation figures for July. The labor market conditions index and consumer credit numbers for the US are the only pieces of data still to come today.