FX Week Ahead

ECB, Fed meeting minutes. Jackson Hole symposium

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Economic data for the week ahead take a backseat with no major releases scheduled. Against this backdrop, investors are likely to remain cautious with the ongoing uncertainty regarding the U.S. sanctions, trade tariffs, and President Trump’s tweets.

The economic calendar for the week ahead covers the RBA’s monetary policy meeting minutes. Later in the week, the Fed meeting minutes and the ECB’s minutes are also due over the course of the week.

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New Zealand will be reporting on the quarterly retail sales figures for the second quarter. Canada’s retail sales are also due on Wednesday for the month of June. Data from the U.S. will see the release of the durable goods orders report.

The main this week will be the two days annual Jackson Hole symposium will start off on Thursday, August 23. Known for the annual gathering of central bank chiefs, the markets will be looking for any statements on monetary policy.

Here’s a quick preview of the economic calendar for the week ahead.

Meeting minutes – FOMC, ECB, RBA

The week ahead will see three central banks releasing their meeting minutes. The minutes are from the monetary policy meetings that were held in August.

Overall, no changes were made across all three central banks. The RBA left the rates unchanged and did not make any tweaks to its forward guidance as widely expected.

Meanwhile, the ECB and the Federal Reserve both left monetary policies unchanged. Given that the Fed hike interest rates in June and the ECB announced its QE plans during the same month, the monetary policy meetings did not throw any surprises.

ECB

The meeting minutes, as a result, are expected to maintain the status quo. Investors are already betting the next rate hike from the Fed to come at the September meeting. The ECB for its part is expected to cut its current bond purchases by half to 15 billion euro before fully ending the QE program by end of December.

Concerns might arise in regards to the U.S. trade policies but investors are likely to brush aside the news. While the overall meeting minutes are broadly expected to see no surprises, any undiscounted news could bring some volatility to the markets.

Annual Jackson Hole Symposium

The annual Jackson Hole economic symposium will start this week on Thursday. Heads of various central banks will converge at Jackson Hole with this year’s theme entitled “Changing Market Structure and Implications for Monetary Policy.”

The theme comes at a time when the global economy is currently going through a period of uncertainty. The rising threat of populist measures and protectionist policies have already made their presence felt.

With the U.S. and China tied to a strong trade war, the effects for the moment seem contained. Monetary policymakers and central bank chiefs around the world have maintained that the economic clouds of uncertainty remain the main headwind for global economic growth.

While there were some initial concerns on the slow start to some of the major economies, economic momentum picked up speed by the second quarter.

This year’s Jackson Hole symposium is likely to see central bankers focusing on the current geopolitical environment. With almost all the central banks in a tightening mode, no major surprises are expected.

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