BoJ (Bank of Japan); four times a year in April, July, October and mid-December;
An economic survey of Japanese business issued by the central Bank of Japan, which it then
uses to formulate monetary policy. The survey covers thousands of Japanese companies
with a specified minimum amount of capital, although firms deemed sufficiently influential
may also be included. The companies are asked about current trends and conditions in the
business place and their respective industries, as well as their expected business activities for
the next quarter and year. It is considered a big market mover for JPY currency pairs.
Department of the Treasury; around the 12th working day of each month, 9:00am EST,
covers month before previous data
The TIC data provides information about the most important way the US is financing its
ongoing current account deficit: selling long-term securities to foreigners, or exporting debt.
It is important to remember that there are other ways of financing a deficit: borrowing from
foreign banks or attracting net FDI inflows. But since FDI flows have been negative and bank
flows tend to be small, most of the financing the US needs has come from the sale of longterm
securities to foreigners. TIC data are a good measurement of how much a country is
trusted in the international investment community. It is considered a big market mover.
Department of Commerce; the second week of each month, 8:30am EST, covers
month before previous data
A country's trade balance is the largest component of a country's balance of payments. The
balance of trade measures the difference between the value of goods and services that a
nation exports, and those it imports. A country has a trade deficit if it imports more than it
exports. The opposite scenario is a trade surplus. It is considered a very big market mover.
A monthly report by US government (the Treasury Department), showing the monthly
budget deficit or surplus.
The level of deficit/surplus affects the level of US bonds issues by the government, hence -
their price. In addition, this report reflects the level of tax collected by the government,
which is indicative of the level of economic activity. Consequently, the April report (the
month in which Americans submit their tax returns) is even more important than those
released in other months.
The Conference Board; around the 20th of each month, 10:00am EST An index used
to predict the direction of the economy's movements in the months to come. The index is
made up of 10 economic components, whose changes tend to precede changes in the overall
economy. These 10 components include:
1. the average weekly hours worked by manufacturing workers;
2. the average number of initial applications for unemployment insurance;
3. the amount of manufacturers' new orders for consumer goods and materials;
4. the speed of delivery of new merchandise to vendors from suppliers;
5. the amount of new orders for capital goods unrelated to defense;
6. the amount of new building permits for residential buildings;
7. the S&P 500 stock index;
8. the inflation-adjusted monetary supply (M2);
9. the spread between long and short interests rates;
10. consumer sentiment.
By looking at the Composite Index of Leading Indicators in the light of business cycles and
general economic conditions, investors and businesses can form expectations about what's
ahead, and make better-informed decisions. It has medium importance, as its many
components are already known at the time of its publication.