Asia Forex news roundup: Australia’s employment data is dismal.
On Thursday, September 16, 2021, forex news for Asia trading will be :
The monthly Australian labor market report includes two “headlines,” the net number of jobs gained or lost and the unemployment rate. We received the August report today.
- For the first, 146,300 jobs were lost
- And for the second, the unemployment rate fell! To 4.5% from its prior reading 4.6%
That jobless rate appears to be a favorable result, but it is the result of a significant decline in labor force participation, since many unemployed persons were unable to leave their homes to look for work owing to lockdowns and thus withdrew from the labor force. This is heartbreaking news. The Australian Bureau of Statistics advised on the report that the best metric to look at was the ‘hours worked’ for the month, which decreased by a massive 3.7 % . Once again, horrible (graphic below).
Since the data was released, the AUD/USD has dribbled a little lower, although the net change on the day has been minimal. Along with that, the NZD/USD has dropped slightly. The Q2 GDP statistics from New Zealand, which was released earlier in the day, was impressive, indicating that the economy has significant momentum heading into Q3.
With no news or data, the USD/CAD is slightly higher, while the EUR/USD and GBP/USD are little moved.
In China, iron ore declined once again as concerns of weaker demand remained firmly entrenched, with the push to reduce steel production continuing a focus. China iron ore futures have dropped to their lowest level since the middle of 2020.
On the geopolitical front, US President Biden, UK Prime Minister Johnson, and Australian Prime Minister Morrison announced a new security alliance (the awkwardly named AUKUS alliance) in which Australia will receive nuclear-powered submarines for the first time, as well as Tomahawk missiles, among other weapons.
Taro Kono, the favorite to be the next Japanese Prime Minister, appears to edge further ahead in the race.