Here’s what to expect in the week ahead:
Auto sales for June may post a modest increase from last year.
Automakers report their June sales totals on Tuesday, and a modest rise is expected. The researcher Cox Automotive estimated that sales will be about 2 percent higher than in June 2017. The increase, however, doesn’t alter the broader trend in the American market. Forecasters still see full-year sales falling short of 17 million cars and trucks, after three years above that mark, and expect another decline in 2019. Sales of cars and light trucks peaked in 2016, when they hit 17.5 million sold.
— Neal E. Boudette
United States markets will close for Independence Day.
The New York Stock Exchange will close at 1 p.m. on Tuesday ahead of the Fourth of July, when markets and government offices will be closed. In lieu of a long holiday weekend, Americans can look forward to a rare midweek break to enjoy summer and watch fireworks before the markets reopen on Thursday.
— Will Dudding
Fed minutes may offer insight into trade policy concerns.
The minutes of the Federal Reserve’s June meeting, set to be released on Thursday, are expected to give more insight into officials’ concerns over whether trade policy will disrupt the economic recovery. The minutes are also expected to give clues as to whether the Fed will raise interest rates one or two more times this year.
— Jim Tankersley
First round of tariffs against Chinese goods will take effect.
The Trump administration’s first round of China tariffs goes into effect on Friday, when the United States will begin imposing a 25 percent tax on $34 billion in Chinese products. The initial round will target products like robotics, engines and aircraft parts. President Trump has threatened to impose tariffs on a total of $450 billion in Chinese goods, and the Chinese, in response, have threatened to retaliate by taxing American pork, soybeans and other products. It seems increasingly unlikely that the two countries will reach an agreement to avert a trade war, as Beijing and Washington remain deeply at odds and have not scheduled talks to resolve their differences.
— Deborah Solomon
Jobs report expected to show another strong month of growth.
The Labor Department is scheduled to release its monthly report on hiring and unemployment for June at 8:30 a.m. on Friday. Wall Street analysts are looking for another strong month of growth, with payrolls expected to have expanded by 200,000 jobs after the addition of 223,000 jobs in May. The jobless rate is expected to sit at 3.8 percent for the second month as more Americans come off the sidelines to join the work force. The consensus forecast is that the tight labor market will cause the average hourly wage to climb by 0.3 percent for the second month in a row, which would nudge the annual year-over-year increase to 2.8 percent.
While the domestic steel sector has applauded the administration’s moves toward tariffs, carmakers and other manufacturers are warning that escalating trade tensions could end up forcing them to scale back on hiring in the months to come. It is still too soon for the jobs report, however, to pick up any cutbacks directly related to a string of trade-related announcements in Washington and in other capitals.
— Patricia Cohen