Thursday preview: Capitol Hill, US jobs data in the spotlight

25 March 2020

(Sharecast News) - The market spotlight on Thursday will remain firmly on Capitol Hill as legislators in the US try to thrash out an agreement on a coronavirus epidemic relief bill.
Unfortunately, any announcement might now coincide with an extraordinarily weak reading for weekly initial unemployment claims.

Consensus is for 2.0m initial jobless claims, versus a four-week moving average of 232,250, as companies begin to lay-off workers in response to the Covid-19 virus.

It is against that backdrop that rate-setters at the Bank of England will meet to decide on policy.

Economists do not anticipate a further reduction in Bank Rate, but according to analysts at <em>Barclays Research</em> "risks [...] are that the Bank implements further measures in relation to any further policy announcements by the Treasury and/or adverse market movements."

Across the Channel meanwhile, investors will be waiting on the latest GfK consumer confidence survey for Germany referencing the month of April and a survey on French business confidence in March.

<strong>Thursday 26 March</strong>

INTERIM DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE

Springfield Properties

INTERIM EX-DIVIDEND DATE

Brooks Macdonald Group, Ferguson, Go-Ahead Group, Origin Enterprises, TR European Growth Trust, Tristel, Volution Group

QUARTERLY PAYMENT DATE

Kosmos Energy (DI)

QUARTERLY EX-DIVIDEND DATE

British American Tobacco, British Land Company, Contour Global , Duke Royalty Limited, Real Estate Investors, Value and Income Trust, XP Power Ltd. (DI)

INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

Continuing Claims (US) (12:30)

GFK Consumer Confidence (GER) (07:00)

Gross Domestic Product (12:30)

Initial Jobless Claims (US) (12:30)

GMS

AVI Japan Opportunity Trust

FINALS

Arbuthnot Banking Group, BBGI SICAV S.A. (DI), DigitalBox, Ebiquity, Hilton Food Group, Impact Healthcare Reit , Integrated Diagnostics Holdings, International Public Partnerships Ltd., Lamprell, Regional REIT Limited, Secure Trust Bank, Venture Life Group

ANNUAL REPORT

BBGI SICAV S.A. (DI), British American Tobacco, Spectris, Travis Perkins, Vivo Energy

SPECIAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE

River and Mercantile Group , Royal Bank of Scotland Group

EGMS

PJSC Centre For Cargo Container Traffic Transcontainer GDR (Reg S)

AGMS

AVI Japan Opportunity Trust , Independent Inv Trust, LG Electronics Inc GDS (Reg S), RM

UK ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS

BoE Interest Rate Decision (12:00)

Retail Sales (09:30)

FINAL DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE

Jersey Electricity 'A' Shares

FINAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE

AIB Group, Devro, Fidelity European Values, Globaldata, Maven Income and Growth VCT 5, OneSavings Bank, Pearson, Prudential, Royal Bank of Scotland Group, Schroders, Schroders (Non-Voting), Wynnstay Group