Events to look out for next week

Tuesday – 17 March 2020

  • RBA Minutes and House Prices (AUD, GMT 00:30) – The RBA minutes should provide guidance as to how whether the RBA members are actually prepared for further easing. The bank signalled in its last meeting that it is ready to do more in a coordinated fiscal-monetary policy action.
  • Average Earnings (GBP, GMT 09:30) – Average Earnings excluding bonus are expected to have grown by 3.3% in January. The ILO unemployment rate is expected to have remained at 3.8%.
  • Economic Sentiment (EUR, GMT 10:00) – German March ZEW economic sentiment is expected to have sharply declined to -23.4 compared to 10.4 in February.
  • Retail Sales (USD, GMT 12:30) – February gains of 0.2% are anticipated for headline retail sales and 0.3% for the ex-auto figure, following January gains of 0.3% for both measures. A -3.5% drop is seen for the CPI gasoline index, with an associated drop in service station sales.

Wednesday – 18 March 2020

  • CPI Inflation (CAD, GMT 12:30) – Canadian core inflation is expected to have declined to 1.7% y/y, compared to 1.8% y/y in January.
  • Fed Interest Rate Decision and Conference (USD, GMT 18:00) – On March 12, Fed announced a massive repo term operations of a maximum of $500 bln in 1- and 3-month repos across the maturity spectrum. The market is still looking for aggressive easing by the FOMC next week, with another 50 bp rate cut with potential for move before FOMC meeting on 17th, 18th. Some Fedwatchers are projecting a 100 bp easing.
  • Gross Domestic Product (NZD, GMT 21:45) – New Zealand Q4 GDP is expected to have dropped by 0.5% q/q, compared to 0.7% q/q in 2019Q3.

Thursday – 19 March 2019

  • Employment Data (AUD, GMT 00:30) – Both the unemployment rate and the employment change are expected to have eased in February, decreasing to 5.2% and 11.6k respectively.
  • BoJ Interest Rate Decision and Conference (JPY, GMT 03:00- 06:00) – Shadowed by Covid-19, the BoJ has less room for monetary policy manoeuvre, with Japan not depending on foreign investment inflows to sustain financing and with Japanese investors apt during times of risk aversion in global markets to repatriate capital from the sale of foreign assets, and/or put on currency hedges on foreign assets. Survey data released showed large Japanese manufacturers’ business sentiment fell to a nine-year low in Q1, which will keep the BoJ under pressure to loosen monetary policy at its upcoming policy review on March 18th-19th, however markets anticipate no change in the rates by BoJ.
  • SNB Interest Rate Decision (CHF, GMT 08:30) The SNB is not expected to surprise markets as the Swiss rate is forecast to remain at -0.75%.

Friday – 20 March 2020

  • PBoC Interest Rate Decision (CNY, GMT 01:30) –The People’s Bank of China injected $79 billion into the economy through a reduction in reserve ratios for banks, while it offered discounts to banks’ reserve ratios of between half and 1 percentage point from their original level.
  • Retail Sales (CAD, GMT 12:30) – Canada’s retail sales contracted in Q4, tracking expectations for a slowing in GDP.  In contrast to Q4 outcome, January 2020 sales volume is forecasted at a 0.3% gain from the flat December reading.

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Andria Pichidi

Market Analyst

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