When is the Australian employment report and how could it affect AUD/USD?

January month employment statistics from the Australian Bureau of Statistics, up for publishing at 00:30 GMT on Thursday, will be the immediate catalyst for the AUD/USD pair traders.

The jobs figures become more important considering the Omicron impact to be seen in January. Also a major concern is the Reserve Bank of Australia’s (RBA) hesitance to respect the rate-hike concerns while citing the virus-led economic setback, which is likely to delay the recovery to H2 2022 per the latest RBA Minutes.

Market consensus favors Employment Change to ease to 0K from +64.8K previous on a seasonally adjusted basis whereas the Unemployment Rate is likely to remain unchanged at 4.2%. Further, the Participation Rate may also ease from 66.1% to 66.0%.

Ahead of the event, analysts at Westpac said,

Balancing the ongoing support from the NSW and Victoria post-Delta reopening against the Omicron outbreak over the summer holidays, Westpac anticipates employment to lift by 30k in January (market median estimate is 0k, range -60k to +59k), with risks to the downside. Participation holding steady at 66.1% should facilitate a fall in the unemployment rate of around 0.2ppt (Westpac f/c: 4.0%, market 4.2%, unchanged from December).

How could the data affect AUD/USD?

AUD/USD bulls take a breather around a one-week high near 0.7200, after rising for the last two consecutive days, during Thursday morning in Asia. In doing so, the risk barometer portrays the market’s indecision over the Russia-Ukraine crisis and the Fed moves amid the pre-data caution.

As markets have already priced their bets on softer data, amid virus woes, backed by the RBA’s recently downbeat comments, any positive surprise will help AUD/USD to extend recent recovery moves. However, no major up-down is expected until the readings print extreme figures.

Technically, a daily closing beyond the 50-DMA, near 0.7170 by the press time, joins firmer RSI and MACD signals to direct AUD/USD buyers towards the 0.7235-45 key resistance area comprising the 100-DMA and a descending trend line from early November.

Key Notes

AUD/USD bulls pause around 0.7200 with eyes on Australia employment data

AUD/USD Forecast: Bulls lead ahead of Australian employment data

About the Employment Change

The Employment Change released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics is a measure of the change in the number of employed people in Australia. Generally speaking, a rise in this indicator has positive implications for consumer spending which stimulates economic growth. Therefore, a high reading is seen as positive (or bullish) for the AUD, while a low reading is seen as negative (or bearish).

About the Unemployment Rate

The Unemployment Rate released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics is the number of unemployed workers divided by the total civilian labor force. If the rate hikes, indicates a lack of expansion within the Australian labor market. As a result, a rise leads to weaken the Australian economy. A decrease of the figure is seen as positive (or bullish) for the AUD, while an increase is seen as negative (or bearish).

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