Czech Construction Output Falls the Least in 11 Months
Construction output in the Czech Republic fell 3.1 percent from a year in March of 2021, following an 11 percent drop in the previous month. It was the 12th consecutive month of falling construction activity amid the ongoing pandemic crisis, although at the softest pace since last April. Building activity decreased 5.7 percent (vs -13.8 percent in February) while civil engineering works rose 6.5 percent (vs 0.8 percent). Considering the first quarter of 2021, construction output slumped 6.1 percent.
Taiwan Trade Surplus Exceeds Market Consensus
Taiwan’s trade surplus widened to USD 6.18 billion in April of 2021, from USD 2.44 billion in the same month of the previous year and largely surpassed market expectations of USD 3.12 billion. Exports surged 38.7% year-on-year to USD 34.96 billion, the tenth consecutive month of increases and above market forecasts of a 26.9% jump. Sales rose primarily for parts of electronic products (34.0%); information, communication, & audio-video products (35.9%); base metals & articles thereof (40.7%); plastic, rubber & articles thereof (52.5%); and machinery (27.6%). Meantime, imports rose a slower 26.4% to USD 28.79 billion, the sixth straight month of increases and was slightly higher than market estimates of a 24.0% jump. Larger volumes were seen in purchases of parts of electronic products (23.6%); mineral products (58.4%); machinery (34.3%); chemicals (10.1%); and base metals & articles thereof (33.4%).
Czech Industrial Production Rises More than Expected
Industrial production in the Czech Republic jumped 14.9 percent from a year earlier in March of 2021, rebounding from a 2.6 percent drop in the previous month and above market expectations of an 11.4 percent gain. It was the biggest gain in industrial activity since the series began in 2001, as manufacturing production rebounded sharply (16 percent vs -3.1 percent in February) and output of electricity, gas, steam and air conditioning supply advanced faster (9 percent vs 1.5 percent). Also, production of mining & quarrying decreased less (-2.7 percent vs -2.9 percent). On a monthly basis, industrial activity rose 3.2 percent. Considering the first quarter of the year, industrial production advanced 4.1 percent.
US Employers Likely Added 978K Jobs in April
Nonfarm payrolls in the US likely increased by 978K in April of 2021, which would be the strongest employment growth in 8 months, following a 916K rise in March. Job gains in April were likely led by the leisure and hospitality industry, manufacturing and construction as more businesses including restaurants and bars reopen, companies rushed to boost production amid a surge in demand and as the coronavirus vaccination campaign and government support continue. Still, that would leave the economy about 7.5 million jobs short of the peak in February of 2020, as the job market still has a long way to go before fully recovering from the pandemic shock. Also, shortages of skilled workers and the supply of parts and materials could hurt factory employment in the short-run.