Tuesday preview: UK employment, HSBC in focus

By Alexander Bueso

Date: Monday 17 Feb 2020

Tuesday preview: UK employment, HSBC in focus

(Sharecast News) - The focus on both sides of the Channel on Tuesday will be on some of the most recent data for the turn of the year, as investors try to assess economic momentum.

In the UK, the December employment report is due out at 0930 GMT. Economists anticipate that the year-on-year rate of growth in average weekly earnings will slow from 3.2% to 3.1%, while at the core level, which strips out bonuses, the rate of increase will dip from 3.4% to 3.3%.

The rate of unemployment on the other hand is seen steady at 3.8%.

Over in Germany meanwhile, the ZEW institute's economic confidence index for February will give markets a bead on how analysts and professional investors see the outlook for the Eurozone's largest economy.

The market spotlight is likely to shine brightest on HSBC on the corporate side of things.

UBS's Jason Napier estimates the lender will post adjusted fourth quarter profits before tax of $4.0bn, a common equity Tier1 ratio of 14.0% and a tangible net asset value of 699 cents.

However, investors will be especially on the lookout for greater detail into HSBC's restructuring plans.

"While we think that HSBC would be doing the right thing by significantly simplifying the group and reducing capital allocated to low return activities, the restructuring costs and negative operating leverage of these actions is likely to make 2020 a tough year for the P&L and a difficult backdrop from which to expect a re-rating from a stock trading at a material premium to the UK domestic banks," he said.

"Even without further restructuring the challenges of low rates, Hong Kong unrest and coronavirus could prove to be material headwinds."

Tuesday 18 February


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ZEW Survey (GER) - Current Situation (10:00)

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Claimant Count Rate (09:30)

Unemployment Rate (09:30)


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