On the upcoming economic calendar for Friday, April 4th, there are five key news items to be aware of.

At 04:30, the U.K. will release the services PMI. This release measures the activities of purchasing managers, who are surveyed on production, employment, inventories, orders, and delivery statistics. As an indicator of economic performance the PMI has the ability to easily affect currency valuations as Institutions re-align existing positions, or build new, on the strength of these reports. Expectations are for the reading to come in steady at 43.6 which is slightly lower than the previous months reading.

Later, at 08:30, the much anticipated non-farm payrolls and unemployment rate will be released from the United States. These releases measure the number of jobs created, or the percentage of employed/unemployed in the labor market. A currency will strengthen or weaken in-line with the other releases that the employment data impacts, rather than as a knee-jerk reaction to these numbers printing. The unemployment rate is expected to rise to 8.5 percent while the nonfarm employment change is projected to lose 659K jobs during the previous month.

Next will be the ISM non-manufacturing PMI. This release is similar to the PMI numbers, which surveys purchasing managers on their sentiment on orders, hiring, inventories, and deliveries. A currency can be very reactive to these numbers as over time they have been a reliable read on Government reports to come. Analysts have expected this number to come in slightly higher than last month’s reading of 41.6 to 41.9.

Lastly, at 12:00, Federal Reserve Chairman Bernanke will be speaking at the Richmond Federal Reserve Bank’s 3rd Annual Credit Market Symposium. As the head of the Federal Reserve, which controls short term interest rates, he has more influence over the dollar’s value than any other person. Traders will be scrutinizing his statements in order to gain insight into subtle clues regarding future monetary policy. Volatility can be expected during this speech.