Economic Releases

how the market reacts to economic releases is generally determined by two factors:

1. How important the market considers a particular release to be.

2. How close to market estimates the number comes in at. Remember that markets anticipate news, so generally if an economic release comes out as expected, there is very little if any market reaction to that release.

How important the market considers a particular economic release to be, is something that changes over time depending on what is happening from a fundamentals standpoint. If there are worries that the economy is going into recession, then the market is going to be extra sensitive to any numbers, such as non farm payrolls and consumer spending, which may provide early warning signs that this is the case. Conversely, if the economy is heating up and the markets are worried that inflation may become a problem, then the most market moving numbers may be price data releases, such as the CPI and the PPI. For your reference, according to the most market moving indicators, in order of importance were:

1. Employment – Non-Farm Payrolls (Jobs Report)
2. FOMC Releases
3. Retail Sales
4. ISM Manufacturing
5. Inflation
6. Producer Price Index ( The Consumer Price / Produce Price Indexes )
7. The Trade Balance
8. Existing Home Sales
9. Gross Domestic Product (GDP)

you can use to find out what economic data is due for release, and for commentary on the number after the release. They have a calendar which you can find at the top of the site as well as tons of both technical and fundamental commentary.

the best way to get a feel for how economic numbers affect the market, and which numbers are in focus, is to start following the market on a daily basis and seeing how it reacts to various news events.