By WSJ Staff
The week ahead features U.S. data on trade, productivity, employment and consumer sentiment, while Brazil's central bank could cut its benchmark interest rate to an all-time low.
TUESDAY: The U.S. Commerce Department releases data on international trade for October. The trade deficit widened in September by 1.7%, reflecting imports increasing to the highest level since January. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal forecast a trade gap of $47.4 billion in October, compared with $43.5 billion in September.
WEDNESDAY: The Brazilian central bank is expected to cut rates to a historic low of 7%, but markets are increasingly uneasy about the country's debt load, which is much higher than in other emerging markets and is likely to keep growing as the government struggles to fix an insolvent pension system. If a pension overhaul isn't approved this year, interest rates could bounce back to higher levels as soon as next year, economists say.
The central banks of Canada and India also will make policy decisions Wednesday, while the Reserve Bank of Australia releases a policy statement Tuesday (Monday night in the U.S.).
The U.S. Labor Department releases revised data on worker productivity for the third quarter. The first reading, released in early November, showed productivity increased at a 3% seasonally adjusted annual rate, up from a 1.5% growth rate for the second quarter. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal forecast third-quarter productivity rose at a revised 3.2% annual rate.
FRIDAY: The U.S. Labor Department releases the November jobs report, days before the Federal Reserve's December monetary policy meeting Dec. 12-13. Investors are penciling in a December interest-rate increase with near certainty, and the November employment figures could provide further ammunition for another rate rise. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal forecast the unemployment rate will remain 4.1% in November and nonfarm payroll employment growth of 190,000.
The University of Michigan releases its preliminary reading on December consumer sentiment. The University of Michigan's consumer-sentiment index was 98.5 in November, up from a preliminary reading of 97.8 but down from 100.7 in October. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expect a consumer sentiment reading of 99.4 in December.