The highlight of this week’s U.S. economic data calendar looms Friday with the release of the March jobs report. And traders looking for a potential surprise — good or bad — are circling two currencies.
They see the British pound GBPUSD, -0.7447% and the Australian dollar AUDUSD, +0.1125% AUDUSD, +0.1125% as the most likely to react to an unexpected reading. The release, due at 8:30 a.m. Eastern, may be getting even more attention than usual after disappointing February data showed the economy added just 20,000 jobs, well short of the 172,000 expected.
“In the event the jobs and crucially wages data beat expectations, then we would favor looking for short-term bullish setups on the dollar against the likes of the British pound given the ongoing Brexit uncertainty in the U.K.,” wrote Matt Weller, currency analyst at Forex.com.
Any upside in the greenback could be a double-whammy for sterling bears. Despite putting together three winning sessions to begin the week, the pound sits on a knife-edge as the struggle by U.K. politicians to agree on the potential terms of the country’s divorce from the European Union continue.
On Wednesday, Parliament voted by a majority of one (313 to 312) to legally rule out exiting the EU without an agreement — a so-called no-deal Brexit. May’s Conservative Party and the opposition Labour Party held further talks Thursday, with the prime minister looking to agree on a common approach before an EU summit next week. May has said she would seek a short delay of the U.K.’s exit scheduled for April 12, during which she would attempt to pass the needed legislation before May 23, allowing the U.K. to