Economic report calendar

Other calendars: Holiday calendar - Options expiration

Real Time Economic Calendar provided by UK.

How to correctly use an economic calendar

The economic news calendar plays an important role in the life of every trader and investor, whether you are a small trader speculating with a personal account or a trader that is part of an institutional trading network. An economic calendar is a tool that shows fundamental events that affect the business environment of financial markets.

In financial markets such as the forex, there are certain announcements that are made with a regular frequency and which highlight important events in the socio-political and economic world. These announcements come from government agencies, central banks, private organisations, among others, and can sometimes serve as benchmarks on which economic policies and strategic movements of the economic and political landscape are based.

For example, the onset of the global financial crisis led governments around the world to react politically depending on how their countries and governments were affected by the events of 2008 to 2010. In the euro zone, the sovereign debt crisis spurred changes in governments and the implementation of specific economic policy decisions. In the United States, we saw the birth of the Troubled Asset Relief Programme (TARP), several major bailouts, and the Federal Reserve's easing policies. Many of these decisions were made around the world, forever impacting the economic news calendar as we know it.

The global nature of today's world means that these announcements directly affect the world's economy, with far-reaching effects on how we live our lives and how future events will shape our future. Financial market players have had to learn to understand how these announcements affect the investment climate in a country, region or in global markets. Depending on the content and tone of these economic announcements, positive or negative sentiment can develop in a currency, market, or economy. This in turn leads traders to operate in different markets in a certain way, due to the volatility that occurs. These announcements are known as "market news".

Market news is not released randomly, but on a well-planned monthly schedule, within a full annual cycle. This economic news release schedule is called the economic calendar. For forex traders, it is also known as the forex calendar or forex news calendar, as most of the news it presents has an immediate and direct (and sometimes lasting) impact on the currency market. Indeed, the economic calendar affects all markets, although the degree of its impact will vary.

Economic calendar components

What does the economic news calendar consist of? What are the elements of this tool that traders need to consider? Here is a detailed description of the specific components of the economic calendar:

The date and time of publication of all economic news included in the calendar. Here, the trader can clearly see the exact time of the news release, which usually appears by default in US Eastern Time (New York/Wall Street time). Many economic calendars have tools that allow users to change the time settings to match their local time. However, the benchmark global standard is US Eastern Time. Traders must therefore know how far they are from the Eastern USA time zone in order to know the times of the day when they must pay attention to the markets.

The economic news itself. Of course, traders must know what economic news will be published and what they will do as a result of the announced figures.

In terms of the forex, the currency of the country linked to a news release. This is the currency that is typically affected by news, so traders will be on the lookout for relevant currency pairs to see which pairs offer the best trading opportunities. Often, the ISO abbreviation of the currency will be displayed, or the flag of the country whose currency is affected.

The degree of impact on the news publication market. This is an indication of the strength of the impact of the news on the affected markets, measured by the degree of market volatility and the magnitude of price movements. News on an economic calendar is classified into three categories: low impact (*), medium impact (**), and high impact (***) economic news. Some calendars use color codes next to news, while others use stars (*) to indicate the degree of impact to be expected in the market.

Some economic calendar suppliers display a "Details" box. Traders can click here for more information on a particular news item, as well as the impact on the market in the event of higher than expected or lower than expected numbers.

Economic calendars show the previous value, the expected value, the present value, and a revised value of each economic news item. This is where traders can get information about the benchmarks for each data item and the actual numbers for the news as it comes in. Some suppliers offer a historical chart or model that shows the performance of a particular news item over the past few months or years, for comparison purposes.


In summary, we can conclude that an economic calendar is an important tool for traders in all financial markets. It must be used completely and correctly so that you can derive maximum benefit from the information it provides. Sometimes you may need to combine two or three calendars in order to get whatever you want from an economic calendar, as some may have additional features and/or fall short in other areas.

Trading relies primarily on planning. Knowing the economic calendar well in advance can help you plan your trades so that you don't get trapped by some of the surprises that can arise with economic news releases.

Also keep in mind that the market is constantly changing. Some economic news that had a low impact a few years ago has become more important to the markets and has a high impact due to the emergence of new sectors which are now leading the global economy. One example is housing data in the United States. Before 2006, some housing sector indicators were not very important, but when the subprime mortgage crisis was identified as being the leading cause of the global financial crisis of 2008, housing data in the United States has become highly watched economic news.

Lastly, traders should be aware of new economic news announcements, and they should ignore those that are irrelevant or even archaic. Some news can have a major impact, like the JOLTS report on jobs in the United States, which emerged out of the country's labour crisis.