Here is what you need to know.
Friday is jobs day in America. The US economy is expected to have added 170,000 nonfarm jobs as the unemployment rate ticked up to 7.4%, according to a survey of economists by Bloomberg. Additionally, average hourly earnings are anticipated to have climbed 2.8% year-over-year. The data will cross the wires at 8:30 a.m. ET.
A new king of auto sales has been throned in China. Honda saw sales surge 24 per cent YoY to 1.25 million vehicles in 2016, surpassing rival Toyota as the number one automaker in China, Reuters says.
Australia’s first recession in 25 years could be on hold. The country recorded a surprise trade surplus in November, the first since March 2014, and if repeated in December it is expected to add enough to fourth quarter growth to prevent the first recession since 1991. The Australian dollar is little changed at .7341 against the dollar.
A second Scottish referendum isn’t happening. Prime minister Nicola Sturgeon has abandoned her plans to hold a second referendum to keep Scotland in the European Union, saying that she has accepted “reality.” The British pound is down 0.3% at 1.2364 versus the dollar.
Bitcoin is crashing again. The cryptocurrency crashed as much as 23% on Thursday, touching a low of $888.99 per coin before finishing the day near $968. Selling has picked back up on Friday with bitcoin lower by 13.5% at $886.
Frontier Airlines is planning to go public. The low-cost carrier has hired Deutsche Bank, JPMorgan, and Evercore to help with its initial public offering, the New York Times says.
There’s finally some good news from the retail sector. Gap announced sales at stores that have been open at least one year rose by 4% versus a year ago, compared to the 1.7% drop that analysts were anticipating, and raised its full-year profit forecast. Shares traded higher by as much as 10% in Thursday’s after hours session.
US mall vacancies were flat in the fourth quarter. Vacancies held at 7.8%, Reuters reports, citing data compiled by Reis.
Stock markets around the world are mostly lower. China’s Shanghai Composite (-0.4%) lagged in Asia and France’s CAC (-0.5%) trails in Europe. The S&P 500 is on track to open higher by 0.2% near 2,268.
US economic data is heavy. Aside from the jobs report, the trade balance will be released at 8:30 a.m. ET and both factory orders and durable goods orders will cross the wires at 10 a.m. ET. The Baker Hughes rig count will be announced at 1 p.m. ET. The US 10-year yield is up 1 basis point at 2.35%.
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