Busy slate of economic releases includes FOMC minutes and jobs numbers for Crypto Catalyst Watch.

During the shortened U.S. holiday week, there will be a condensed schedule of economic data that could impact inflation, interest rates, and the outlook for bitcoin (BTC) and other cryptocurrencies.

FOMC Minutes

On Wednesday at 2 p.m. (ET), the minutes from the U.S. Federal Reserve’s mid-June meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) will be released. At that meeting, the Fed paused its series of rate hikes, which had been ongoing for over a year and had raised the benchmark fed funds rate from 0% to 5%-5.25% by early 2022.

In public statements following the meeting, Fed officials, including Chairman Jay Powell, have made it clear that the pause in rate hikes was only temporary. Currently, policymakers at the central bank anticipate raising rates at least two more times in 2023. Rate traders agree, with the CME’s Fed Watch tool currently predicting an 89% chance of the Fed resuming rate hikes with a 25 basis point (bps) increase to the fed funds rate at its next meeting in late July.

Jobs Reports

On Thursday at 8:15 a.m. (ET), market participants will get a preview of the employment situation in June through the ADP Employment Report. Forecasts suggest a significant slowdown in private sector hiring, with an estimated 160,000 jobs added in June compared to 278,000 in May.

A few minutes later on Thursday, the government will release the initial jobless claims figure. Although this gauge has been trending higher in recent months, it remains below levels that would indicate overall job losses in the economy. Economists forecast that Thursday’s report will show initial jobless claims at 245,000, compared to 239,000 in the previous period.

Ninety minutes later on Thursday, the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTs) will be released. While this report was previously not closely followed, it has gained greater significance as market participants seek signals on the employment outlook. Over the past year, this number has declined slightly, indicating a modest softening in the labor market. Forecasters expect Thursday’s report to show JOLTs at 9.9 million, down from 10.1 million previously.

The main event of the week will be the U.S. Nonfarm Payrolls report for June, which will be released on Friday morning at 8:30 am ET. This report has exceeded expectations for 14 consecutive months, demonstrating strength despite rising interest rates that many believed would have slowed the economy and reduced hiring. Economists forecast that 250,000 jobs were added in June, down from 339,000 in May. The unemployment rate is expected to remain at 3.7%.

While many were enjoying the July 4th holiday, an important economic indicator, the ISM’s Manufacturing Purchasing Managers Index (PMI), was released on Monday. The PMI for June decreased to 46.0 from 46.9 previously, marking the lowest level since May 2022 when Covid lockdowns were still in effect. A reading below 50 in this report indicates contraction in the manufacturing sector, and this was the seventh consecutive month below the 50 level.

Edited by James Rubin.

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