Key economic events for the week of Aug. 6

August 5, 2012

The U.S. economic recovery continues to move slowly, with the July jobs numbers — released Friday — showing 163,000 jobs added to the economy but the unemployment rate left largely unchanged.

New information to be released this week should provide additional signals about where the labor market — and the larger U.S. economy — is headed.

Tuesday

The Bureau of Labor Statistics releases its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey at 10 a.m. This report measures the number of job openings across the country, an indicator of whether employers feel confident enough to spend on new salaries.

Last month’s report, which covered May, showed 3.6 million job openings, little changed from the 3.4 million available in April.

Wednesday

At 8:30 a.m., the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases its quarterly look at productivity and labor cost trends. The report, which will cover the second quarter that ended June 30, measures both changes in productivity, as well as any fluctuations in the cost of labor.

Analysts expect to see a 1.4 percent increase in productivity, an increase from the 0.9 percent drop reported in the first quarter.

Analysts forecast a 0.4 percent increase in labor costs. That would be lower than the 1.3 percent increase observed in the prior quarter.

Thursday

At 8:30 a.m., the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports data on initial unemployment claims. Over the past four weeks, initial claims have nudged downward. This week, analysts expect to see 370,000 jobless claims filed — a slight increase from the 365,000 initial claims filed the prior week.

Friday

At 2 p.m., the Treasury releases its monthly budget data, which shows the size of the deficit facing the federal government.

Analysts expect to see a $103 billion deficit in July. The most recent data available showed a $59.7 billion budget deficit as of May.

— Sarah Kliff

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