Focus returns to Brexit talks

6 November, 2017

The President Trump is off to Asia, the earnings season is winding down and the data calendar is thinning. There are several central bank meetings in Asia, however, but they should maintain the status quo. The U.S. economic calendar is a fairly lean one this week should largely be overshadowed by the October payrolls report the week prior, even as U.S. data continues to hit escape velocity after the early dampening impact of the fall hurricanes and even the Napa firestorms.

United States: The week starts slowly with the release of JOLTS job openings (Tuesday), followed by the MBA mortgage applications and EIA energy inventory reports (Wednesday). Initial jobless claims are forecast to rebound 6k to 235k for the November 11 week (Thursday), while wholesale sales are forecast to rise 1.0% in September vs 1.7% and inventories are expected to increase 0.3% vs 0.8%. The week rounds out with updates on preliminary Michigan sentiment (Friday) seen rising to a median 100.7 in November from 100.7. Fedspeak will be highlighted by a Chair Yellen acceptance speech at the Paul H. Douglas Award for Ethics in Government (Tuesday) from 15 ET, though one would imagine that there will be little of policy substance here as she begins the transition to Chair-nominee Powell.

Canada: The docket of economic data is housing-heavy this week. October housing starts (Wednesday) are expected to slip to 215.0k from 217.3k in September. Building permits (Wednesday) are seen falling 1.0% m/m in September after the 5.5% drop in August. The new housing price index (Thursday) is projected to gain 0.1% m/m in September, matching the 0.1% rise in August. Meanwhile, Bank of Canada Governor Poloz speaks (Tuesday) to the CFA Montreal and Montreal Council on Foreign Relations. His speech is titled “Central banks’ ability to understand inflation.” The Governor will also hold a press conference following the speech. The Bank of Canada’s “cautious” approach prevailed from the announcement-MPR-press-conference in October through testimony to Parliament last week from Poloz and Wilkins.

Europe: With central bank decisions out of the way, the focus returns to Brexit talks. The December summit is approaching fast and so far there is no sign that there has been any progress on the key issues EU leaders want to have clarified before they agree to start trade talks. The data calendar is slowing down, but on the whole should confirm that the Eurozone recovery remains on track. German orders and production data may be expected to correct in September from the strong August numbers, but annual rates remain high and survey data suggests overall growth remained broadly steady at 0.6% q/q in Q3. The manufacturing orders expected (Monday) down -1.4% m/m and industrial production (Tuesday), down -1.2% m/m. The final reading for the Eurozone services PMI is likely to confirm that growth in the sector slowed down somewhat in October.  September producer price inflation for the Eurozone (Monday), is expected to show an acceleration in the headline rate to 2.8% y/y from 2.5% y/y, as companies start to pass on cost pressures. Still, as the ECB already clarified its policy path until the end of September next year, the data don’t change the immediate outlook. Supply comes from Germany, which issues index linked bonds Tuesday and 5-year Bonds Wednesday.

UK: Both Gilt yields and sterling tumbled last week, with both adjusting to a lower trading range following the BoE’s guidance at its November MPC meeting last week. The calendar this week starts with the BRC retail sales report for October (Monday), which will be of interest following the much weaker than expected CBI distributive sales survey, which, although not normally taken too seriously (as it covers only a two week period with relative few survey respondents), fanned concerns about the health of the consumer sector in the face of eroding spend power, with inflating having been outstripping pay awards for most of the year. Other data of note include September production and trade figures (both due Friday), where a 0.3% m/m rise and a 1.9% y/y gain, expected.

China’s calendar has October trade (Wednesday), anticipated to widen to a $37.0 bln surplus from $28.6 bln in September. The CPI (Thursday) is projected at 1.8% y/y in October from 1.6% in September. The PPI (Thursday) is expected to slide to 6.5% y/y in October from 6.9% y/y in September. New Yuan loans (Friday) are seen falling to $900.0 bln in October from $1270.0 bln in September. Broadly, growth in China’s economy appears to be moderating.

Japan: Japan’s docket is sparse this week. Core machinery orders (Thursday) are expected to pull-back 3.0% m/m in September after the 3.4% bounce in August. The tertiary industry index (Friday) is projected to fall 0.2% m/m in September after the 0.2% decline in August.

Australia: The Reserve Bank of Australia’s meeting is the highlight. The Bank (Tuesday) is expected to hold the setting for the cash rate steady at 1.50%. The accompanying statement should be consistent with steady rates well into next year. The Bank releases an updated set of projections in Friday’s Statement on Monetary Policy. The economic data docket is empty of top tier releases this week. Housing investment (Thursday) is seen expanding 3.0% m/m in September after the 1.0% rise in August.

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