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MACRO EVENTS & NEWS OF 16th July 2018.
Main Macro Events This Week
Politics will continue to dominate the landscape in early Q3, pretty much as it’s done for most of the year amid escalating trade tensions. Of course, President Trump’s meeting with President Putin in Helsinki (Monday) is anxiously awaited and follows his meetings last week with PM May and NATO. While the political uncertainties have left the markets choppy, signs of strengthening US growth have overshadowed potential drags from trade and have provided global support to equities.
United States: Fed Chairman Powell’s Monetary Policy testimony (Tuesday) would normally be the key event. However, with the FOMC unlikely to divert from its gradualist policy path anytime soon, and especially amid trade uncertainties, attention will shift to earnings announcements and data. The end result of the testimony, however, should support expectations for another 25 bp hike at the September 25, 26 FOMC meeting, while the chances for another tightening in December will be assessed, though that will depend largely on data. Powell will reprise his testimony to the House Financial Services Committee (Wednesday).
In terms of economic reports, it’s the June Retail Sales report (Monday) that’s the star. Also due is June Industrial Production (Tuesday), seen rising 0.5%, rebounding from a 0.1% decline in May, based on the rise in hours-worked from the jobs report. The Empire State index (Monday) should fall to 20.0 in July from an 8-month high of 25.0 in June. The Philly Fed index (Thursday) is expected to rise to 23.0 in July after falling to a 19-month low of 19.9 in June. Slated too are Housing Starts (Wednesday), estimated falling 2.2% to 1.320 mln in June, following a 5.0% surge to a new cycle-high of 1.350 mln in May.
Canada: June Existing Homes Sales report is expected Monday. Manufacturing Shipments (Tuesday) are expected to rise 0.5% in May after the 1.3% drop in April. Retail Sales (Friday) are seen snapping back 1.0% in May after the 1.2% loss in April that was blamed on poor weather during the month. The ex-autos sales aggregate is seen rising 0.5% after a 0.1% dip. The CPI (Friday) is expected to slip 0.1% in June (m/m, nsa) after the surprisingly slim 0.1% gain in May, as falling gasoline prices impact in June. The annual growth rate is seen at 2.2% (y/y, nsa), matching the 2.2% y/y clip in May. The three core CPI measures are expected to maintain the 1.9% annual rate of expansion in June.
Europe: Politics have been dominating the agenda last week and this week is unlikely to be different, with Europe not only looking nervously to President Trump’s meeting with President Putin, but also once again to Brussels. So far the focus has been on PM May’s battle to sell her “soft Brexit” vision at home, but she still has to get an agreement with EU leaders. This week’s calendar includes Eurozone trade and current account numbers, which generally don’t have too much market impact, although a strong export number would underpin the central scenario of still robust growth, while at the same time, will fuel the debate on the EU’s and especially Germany’s trade reliance against the background of rising protectionism. The highlight of the data calendar is the final reading of Eurozone June HICP inflation.
UK: Political developments and Brexit will remain sharply in focus. President Trump’s apparent walking back on Friday of his criticisms of Prime Minister May — after championing Boris Johnson’s credentials as a potential PM in an interview with a Murdoch-owned tabloid newspaper that is wanting to topple PM May — lifted both the Pound and UK yields.
The data calendar this week is pretty busy, highlighted by monthly Labor data (Tuesday), June Inflation data (Wednesday), and June Retail Sales (Thursday).The labor report expected to show the Unemployment Rate remaining at 4.2%, and Average Household Income also remaining unchanged at a rate of 2.5% y/y in the three months to June. June CPI is expected to tick upward, to 2.6% y/y from the unexpected dip in the prior month to 2.4%, which would be consistent with BoE projections made in its May Inflation Report.
Japan: The markets are closed Monday. The June Trade report (Thursday) is expected to see the previous JPY 580.5 bln deficit turn to a JPY 580.0 bln surplus as exports likely outpaced imports on a 12-month basis. June national CPI (Friday) is penciled in accelerating to a 0.9% y/y clip overall, from 0.7% in May, as oil prices firmed and JPY softened. The latter has also likely helped push the core rate to 0.8% y/y, from May’s 0.7%. The May all Industry index (Friday) is forecast to fall 0.1% m/m from the prior 1.0% gain.
Australia: The Employment report (Thursday) takes top billing, where a 15.0k gain is expected in June after the 12.0k rise in May. The Unemployment Rate is projected at 5.4%, matching May and down from 5.6% in April. The minutes of RBA’s July meeting are due Tuesday. To review, RBA held the cash rate steady at 1.50% at the meeting this month and maintained expectations for no change for an extended period.
New Zealand: The calendar has Q2 CPI (Tuesday), expected to rise 0.6% after the 0.5% gain in Q1 (q/q, sa). At the June meeting, RBNZ held rates at 1.75% and opened the door to a rate cut if necessary. It is expected that the next move will be a rate increase — but the current expectation is for steady policy well into next year. The next meeting is on August 9.
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Please note that times displayed based on local time zone and are from time of writing this report.
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