2 Market-Moving Employment Reports You Can Trade

If you’re planning on trading the news this week, then you should definitely have a look at the upcoming employment releases from the U.S. and Canada. Here’s a sneak preview of the jobs showdown between these North American countries scheduled at 2:30 pm GMT tomorrow:

U.S. non-farm payrolls report

nfp hiringThe U.S. economy is expected to have added 231,000 jobs in November, a faster pace of increase compared to the previous month’s 214,000 gain. This should be enough to keep the jobless rate steady at its six-year low of 5.8%. Aside from that, average hourly earnings are expected to show a 0.2% gain, reflecting stronger wage growth.

Although market participants seem to have gotten used to the fact that the U.S. averages more than 200,000 in hiring gains each month, this particular event could still spark a lot of action since it’s the last NFP release for the year. A much higher than expected NFP reading might seal the deal for a dollar rally until the end of 2014 while a weak figure could cast doubts on the Fed’s rate hike time frame.

Canadian employment change

As for Canada, hiring gains could come around to just 5,300 in November, weaker compared to the previous month’s 43,100 increase. If so, the jobless rate could tick higher from 6.5% to 6.6% for the month.

Bear in mind that Canada has printed impressive employment figures for the past couple of months, hinting at a potential recovery in the labor market. Another stronger than expected employment change reading might lend more support to the Loonie, which is putting up a strong fight despite the slide in oil prices.

How can you profit from these events?

With the U.S. likely to post another strong NFP reading and Canada expected to show a slight downturn in hiring, perhaps the first trade idea that comes to mind is long USD/CAD. However, past releases show that this pair tends to spike here and there during the actual event, with very little follow through afterwards.

Trading the Loonie or the Greenback against other currencies could also be an option, especially if you have a strong bias for how the jobs reports might turn out. After all, the dollar has once again extended its rally against most of its forex rivals, which might offer opportunities to reverse the trend at key levels if the NFP disappoints.

What’s your game plan for these jobs reports? Share your thoughts in our comments section or vote in our poll below!

  • ForExchange

    Hi Forex Gump,

    nice writing. It is funny what you wrote about USD/CAD long. I think the setup is more good for a short trade, looking at the risk reward ratio. As you said everyone expects a strong USD report and maybe a weaker CAD report so that is what traders price in. If everything goes “as expected”, then the movement might not be so strong. If there is a negative surprise for USD or positive surprise for CAD, or even both of these surprises happen at the same time then I think we will see huge volatility. Saying that, I am still looking for other setups.

    I am not sure yet how the plan will be but since everyone is expecting strong US numbers, the big pips can be made on a disappointment. I will look more into it.

    Good luck,

    • Yeah I usually look at the potential for disappointment (especially if the expectations are too strong) and setups that can be based off those, but sometimes I worry I might be overthinking. It’s good to be ready for those situations though.

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