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Flat Restart After Aggressive Twist Flattening

     WASHINGTON (MNI) - The following are highlights of forecasts for   
upcoming U.S. economic indicators provided by participants in the MNI   
weekly survey. The comment section presents the key elements behind the 
median forecasts.        
GDP for Second Quarter (second estimate)                                
 Wednesday, August 30 at 8:30 a.m. ET                    Actual:        
               Median        Range                   2Q17s  2Q17a   1Q17
 GDP            +2.7%    +2.5% to +3.0%                 --  +2.6%  +1.2%
 Chain Prices   +1.0%    +1.0% to +1.0%                 --  +1.0%  +2.0%
     Comments: Second quarter GDP is expected to be revised up to a 2.7%
rate from the 2.6% gain in the advance estimate. Analysts expect PCE and
inventories growth to be revised up, offset by a downward adjustment to 
the government component. The chain price index is expected to be       
unrevised at a 1.0% rate of growth.                                     
Weekly Jobless Claims for August 26 week                                
 Thursday, August 31 at 8:30 a.m. ET                     Actual:        
                 Median         Range                Aug26  Aug19  Aug12
 Weekly Claims    236k       230k to 240k               --   234k   232k
     Comments: The level of initial jobless claims is expected to rise  
and additional 2,000 to 236,000 in the August 26 week after a 2,000     
increase in the previous week. The four-week moving average, which has  
declined for four straight weeks, would continue that streak, falling by
1,250 in the coming week as the 241,000 level in the July 29 week drops 
out of the calculation, assuming the MNI forecast is correct and there  
are no revisions.                                                       
Personal Income for July (percent change)                               
 Thursday, August 31 at 8:30 a.m. ET                     Actual:        
              Median          Range                  Jul17  Jun17  May17
 Income        +0.3%     +0.3% to +0.5%                 --   Flat  +0.3%
 Spending      +0.4%     +0.3% to +0.5%                 --  +0.1%  +0.2%
 Core Prices   +0.1%      Flat to +0.2%                 --  +0.1%  +0.1%
     Comments: Personal income is expected to post a 0.3% increase in   
July, as payrolls rose by 209,000, average weekly hours held steady at  
34.5 hours, and hourly earnings rose by 0.3%. Current dollar PCE is     
forecast to rise by 0.4%, as retail sales jumped 0.6% in the month and  
were still up 0.5% excluding a 1.2% gain in motor vehicle sales. Core   
retail sales (also ex. gas) were up 0.5% in the month, while sales      
excluding autos, gas, building materials and food services rose 0.6%,   
indicating underlying strength. The core PCE price index is expected to 
post a 0.1% increase in July, which should keep the y/y measure well    
below 2%.                                                               
MNI Chicago Report for August (index)                                   
 Thursday, August 31 at 9:45 a.m. ET                     Actual:        
              Median        Range                    Aug17  Jul17  Jun17
 MNI Chicago    59.7     58.0 to 61.6                   --   58.9   65.7
     Comments: The MNI Chicago PMI is expected to rise to a reading of  
59.7 in August after reversing to 58.9 in July. Other regional data     
already released suggest solid expansion, particularly in the Empire    
State region.                                                           
Domestic Motor Vehicle Sales for August (mln units, saar)               
 Friday, September 1                                    Actual:         
               Median         Range                  Aug17  Jul17  Jun17
 Dom Sales      12.8m     12.6m to 12.9m                --  12.9m  12.8m
     Comments: Domestic-made vehicle sales are expected to decline 
moderately to 12.8 million SAAR in August after rising in July to 12.9 
million. Seasonal adjustment factors will be a larger subtraction from 
unadjusted sales in August than they were in July.                      
Nonfarm Payrolls for August (change in thousands)                       
 Friday, September 1 at 8:30 a.m. ET                     Actual:        
               Median         Range                  Aug17  Jul17  Jun17
 Payrolls       +180k     +160k to +200k                --  +209k  +231k
 Private Job    +182k     +150k to +205k                --  +205k  +194k
 Jobless Rate    4.3%      4.2% to 4.4%                 --   4.3%   4.4%
 Hrly Earnings  +0.2%     +0.1% to +0.3%                --  +0.3%  +0.2%
 Avg Wkly Hrs    34.5      34.4 to 34.5                 --   34.5   34.5
     Comments: Nonfarm payrolls are forecast to rise by 180,000 in      
August after stronger-than-expected readings in the previous two months.
It remains to be seen if the impact from Amazon's attempt to hire 50,000
new workers will filter through to the payrolls figures this month, but 
it casts some upside risk on the data. The unemployment rate is expected
to hold steady at 4.3%. Hourly earnings are forecast to rise 0.2% after 
a 0.3% gain in the previous month. The average workweek is expected to  
stay at 34.5 for another month.                                         
Construction Spending for July (percent change)                         
 Friday, September 1 at 10:00 a.m. ET                    Actual:        
                Median         Range                 Jul17  Jun17  May17
 Construction    +0.5%     -1.5% to +1.0%               --  -1.3%  +0.3%
     Comments: Construction spending is expected to rise 0.5% in July.  
Housing starts fell 4.8% in the month, suggesting private residential   
building could continue its string of declines.                         
ISM Manufacturing Index for August                                      
 Friday, September 1 at 10:00 a.m. ET                    Actual:        
              Median       Range                     Aug17  Jul17  Jun17
 Mfg ISM        56.6     56.0 to 57.5                   --   56.3   57.8
     Comments: The ISM manufacturing index is expected to rebound       
modesty to a reading of 56.6 in August after a dip back to 56.3 in July.
Regional conditions data have suggested fairly strong growth.           
University of Michigan Survey for August (final)                        
 Friday, September 1 at 10:00 a.m. ET                    Actual:        
                Median        Range                 Aug17f Aug17p  Jul17
 Consumer Sent   97.5     97.0 to 98.0                  --   97.6   93.4
     Comments: The Michigan Sentiment index is expected to be revised   
down slightly to a reading of 97.5 in August from the 97.6 preliminary  
estimate, still above the 93.4 reading in July.                         
--MNI Washington Bureau; +1 202-371-2121; email:
[TOPICS: M$U$$$]