This Week: Trade gap, consumer borrowing, nonfarm payrolls

A look at some of the key business events and economic indicators upcoming this week:


The nation’s trade gap narrowed last fall as imports declined faster than exports.

The gap between what America sells and what it buys abroad dropped 7.6% to $47.2 billion in October. That followed a 4.5% decline in September. Even so, the trade gap was still running 1.3% wider through the first 10 months of 2019 than in the same period in 2018. The Commerce Department issues its November trade gap tally Tuesday.

Trade balance, monthly, billions of dollars, seasonally adjusted:

June -53.7

July -52.7

Aug. -53.5

Sept. -51.1

Oct. -47.2

Nov. (est.) -46.3

Source: FactSet


The Federal Reserve issues new data Wednesday on how much debt Americans took on in November.

The tally, which excludes mortgages and other loans secured by real estate, is expected to show consumer borrowing increased by $17.3 billion. Borrowing climbed $18.9 billion the previous month. That gain in October pushed total consumer credit to a record $4.17 trillion.

Consumer credit, monthly change, seasonally adjusted, billions of dollars:

June 8.5

July 23.6

Aug. 18.7

Sept. 9.6

Oct. 18.9

Nov. (est.) 17.3

Source: FactSet


Economists predict hiring in the U.S. slowed in December after surging the previous month.

They expect the Labor Department will report Friday that nonfarm employers added 160,000 jobs in the final month of 2019. Employers added a robust 266,000 jobs in November. Many economists have warned that hiring could slow because there are fewer unemployed workers available with the U.S. unemployment rate now at 3.5%.

Nonfarm payrolls, monthly change, seasonally adjusted:

July 166,000

Aug. 219,000

Sept. 193,000

Oct. 156,000

Nov. 266,000

Dec. (est.) 160,000

Source: FactSet

The Associated Press