Here Are The Key Market Moving Events For Thursday, March 8, 2012

Monster.com, jobs, employment

Photo: Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Thursday is jobs day in the U.S., with markets eagerly anticipating the final initial claims figure that could impact February’s employment report. Announcements will flow out of Europe as well, and companies reporting quarterly results include Williams-Sonoma and Dynegy.Here’s what you need to know.

  • Japan starts things off at 6:50 p.m. EST on Wednesday evening with a final reading of fourth quarter gross domestic product. Economists predict there will be a revision higher to a 0.2 per cent contraction, from a 0.6 per cent contraction earlier.
  • At 7:30 p.m. EST, the Australian unemployment will be announced, which economists forecast will increase 10 basis points sequentially to 5.2 per cent in February.
  • Announcements go quiet until a reading of nonfarm payrolls in France at 1:30 a.m. EST on Thursday morning. Payrolls are expected to decline by 0.2 per cent in the first quarter. 
  • Swiss consumer prices follow at 3:15 a.m. EST. Economists polled by Bloomberg see CPI increasing by 0.2 per cent month-on-month in February.
  • At 6:00 a.m. EST German industrial production will be released for January. Output is expected to jump 1.1 per cent, reversing a 2.9 per cent decline in December.
  • The Bank of England will announce any changes to benchmark rates at 7:00 a.m. EST, as well as if it is further boosting its asset purchase program. Economists predict neither will be touched, remaining at 0.5 per cent at £325 billion.  
  • Major U.S. announcements kick off at 7:30 a.m. EST, with Challenger job cuts. Job cuts last increased 38.9 per cent in January against year-ago levels. There is no current projection for the day’s reading.
  • At 8:15 a.m. EST Canadian housing starts will be released, with expectations for the annualized rate to hit 200,000, up slightly from last month. 
  • Shortly thereafter, at 8:30 a.m. EST, initial unemployment claims in the U.S. will be announced. Economists see claims flat at 351,000.

Below, the major earnings announcements scheduled for the day.

Smithfield Foods (SFD): $0.65
A123 Systems (AONE): -$0.44
Williams-Sonoma (WSM): $1.13
Aeropostale (ARO): $0.38
Ulta Salon Cosmetics & Fragrance (ULTA): $0.67
Dynegy (DYN): -$0.02
Navistar International (NAV): -$0.17

Consensus estimate provided by Bloomberg.

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