Waves of Economic Data

World Markets

As global investors have repeatedly had their hopes dashed by the Federal Reserve for a pivot away from an aggressive rate hike campaign, many market participants will be keenly awaiting the latest U.S. inflation numbers this Thursday for further guidance on upcoming rate hikes.

Wednesday’s minutes of the latest Fed meeting should offer some insights into how officials view the economy and the inflation outlook. Comments during the week by several Fed policymakers will also be closely watched. Elsewhere, big bank earnings on Friday are expected to show the impact of rising interest rates and market volatility, whereas oil prices remain in the spotlight after OPEC+ announced its largest supply cut since 2020 and in the U.K. a barrage of economic data seems set to test the recovery in sterling.

GBP: The Bank of England’s Financial Policy Committee is set to publish meeting minutes on Wednesday. The committee oversaw last month’s emergency intervention to stabilize bond markets after the government’s “mini-budget”, and the minutes may give some insight into the risks facing pension funds and the implications of sharply higher mortgage rates. The U.K. is also set to publish employment data for August on Tuesday, followed a day later by GDP figures for August along with data on industrial output and the trade balance. Weak economic data could add to pressure on the government to deliver longer-term growth plans. Ultimately, investors are betting on the BoE hiking interest rates by a full percentage point at its next meeting in November to tackle an inflation rate currently touching 10%.

EUR: ECB member and Bank of France head Francois Villeroy de Galhau announced this morning that the European Central Bank is engaged in bringing down inflation to 2% percent in “two to three years” from now. He reiterated that “close to 2%” was still the right target monetary policymakers at the ECB and elsewhere should pursue, adding that the eurozone was still far from it. In fact, Eurozone inflation accelerated to 10% last month. Ultimately, this morning’s comments sent a very strong signal to all economic players that the ECB is set to bring down inflation to the aforementioned target within the next couple of years.

USD: The dollar held its ground on Monday as investors set their sights on data later in the week that is expected to show red-hot inflation after a strong U.S. labour market reinforced bets on higher interest rates. Another elevated inflation reading on Thursday would underline the case for even more hawkishness from the Fed after last Friday’s jobs report indicated that the labour market remains robust despite the Fed’s efforts to bring down high inflation by weakening growth. While economists expect the headline rate of inflation to moderate, core inflation, which strips out food and fuel costs, is expected to accelerate in September, keeping the Fed on track for a fourth consecutive 75-basis point rate hike in November. The economic calendar also features data on consumer sentiment which should show how U.S. consumers are faring after months of tighter monetary policy, along with data on initial jobless claims and wholesale price inflation.