Week Ahead

Next week the US will be publishing existing home sales and flash Markit PMIs, while the ECB and the BoJ will hold their first policy meetings of 2019. Other important releases include: UK unemployment and wage growth; Eurozone consumer confidence and flash Markit PMIs; Germany business and investor morale; China Q4 GDP growth, industrial production, retail sales and fixed asset investment; Japan foreign trade and flash Nikkei Manufacturing PMI; Australia employment figures; New Zealand Q4 inflation rate; and South Korea and the Philippines Q4 GDP growth rates.
Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com 1/18/2019 4:54:55 PM
Next week the US is scheduled to release its monthly report on existing home sales, which is likely to show a 1.3 percent decline in sales of previously owned houses in December, following two consecutive months of increase. In addition, preliminary estimates of Markit PMIs are set to point to the weakest pace of expansion in the manufacturing sector since September 2017 and to the slowest growth rate in services activity for four months. Other notable releases are FHFA home prices, Richmond Fed Manufacturing Index and Kansas Fed Manufacturing Index. Meanwhile, key economic data such as new home sales, construction spending, wholesale inventories, factory orders, international trade, retail trade, building permits and housing starts may be further delayed due to the ongoing partial government shutdown.

Other important data for America include Canada retail trade and Mexico unemployment rate.

In the UK Prime Minister Theresa May is expected to announce a new plan for Brexit negotiations on Monday, after her deal was rejected by MPs. On the economic data front, the unemployment rate is set to remain close to its lowest level since the 1970s at 4.1 percent, and wages are likely to advance an annual 3.3 percent, the same pace as in the previous period and the biggest rise since the three months to July 2008.

Elsewhere in Europe, the ECB will decide on monetary policy, but no changes are expected, with investors focusing on President Mario Draghi's press conference for further clues on a possible change to the forward guidance on interest rates. Meanwhile, the preliminary estimate of the Eurozone consumer confidence is expected to show a further decline in morale to the lowest in over two years and Markit PMIs are likely to signal a slight improvement in services growth while manufacturing expansion should remain at near three-year low. Also, Germany's Ifo business climate is set to decline to a fresh two-year low in January while the country's investor morale will probably improve only marginally. In addition, market players will keep an eye on Norges Bank interest rate decision, with markets anticipating no changes; France manufacturing confidence; and Turkey business and consumer morale.

China will provide updated figures for Q4 GDP growth, alongside industrial production, retail sales and fixed asset investment, with market forecasts pointing to a further slowdown in the economy due to the ongoing trade tariff war with the US. The Bank of Japan is expected to keep its monetary policy unchanged, but policymakers are seen cutting their price forecasts and warning of heightening global uncertainties. The country will also publish trade figures and flash Nikkei manufacturing PMI, leading economic index and Tokyo inflation rate. Exports in December likely fell at their fastest pace in more than two years. Other highlights for the Asia-Pacific region include: Australia employment figures; New Zealand Q4 inflation rate; South Korea and the Philippines Q4 GDP growth; South Korea and Malaysia interest rate decisions; and Thailand trade balance.

Davos, Switzerland, will host the World Economic Forum on January 22nd-25th, but the event isn't expected to attract much attention as only three leaders of the G7 are set to be there: Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Italian Premier Giuseppe Conte.

Week Ahead