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ECONOMIC DATA ANALYSIS - FOMC ON TRACK TO END QE BUT GLOBAL HEADWINDS PERSIST

ECONOMIC DATA ANALYSIS  FRIDAY 24 OCTOBER 2014

 

 Friday 24 October 2014

FOMC ON TRACK TO END QE BUT GLOBAL HEADWINDS PERSIST

  • ECB to deliver its Comprehensive Assessment on Sunday
  • FOMC to end QE but leave forward guidance broadly unchanged
  • Modest uptick in euro area inflation to do little to ease slowdown fears

Market moves over the past week have reflected some signs of relief over the extent of the slowdown in global growth following reasonably firm GDP data in both China and the UK. The past week’s better-than-expected euro area PMIs also eased regional recession fears. Equity markets reacted positively to these developments with the S&P 500 and FTSE 100 up almost 5% and 2.5% respectively, on the week.

The official results of the ECB’s Comprehensive Assessment (of the health of the region’s banks balance sheets) are published on Sunday. These could well dominate market sentiment over the coming days. The Comprehensive Assessment will include a risk assessment, an Asset Quality Review (AQR) and a stress test. While individual banks will have already been made aware of the findings, the public disclosure represents the start of the two-week window, for institutions deemed to be short of capital to put forward their capital raising plans.

Over the course of the week, the focus is likely to shift back to the euro area economic outlook. The October ‘flash’ euro area PMIs pointed to some stabilisation in several parts of the region, in particular Germany. However, forward-looking components of the German PMIs and the ZEW survey suggest that sentiment remains fragile. This concern could be exacerbated by the October German IFO (Mon.) which is forecast to post a fifth consecutive decline, from 104.7 to 104.5.

With fears of outright euro area deflation German state CPI data for October will be closely watched on Thursday morning ahead of the official release in the afternoon and the euro area preliminary CPI the next day. While an unchanged “core” rate and modest uptick in the headline rate are likely to help the ECB justify keeping policy unchanged for now, the prevailing weakness of growth and inflation raise the distinct prospect of further stimulus (QE) over the coming months.

In contrast, the outlook for the US remains more upbeat. Following the distortions to growth in the first half of the year, the Q3 GDP release (Thurs.) will provide the first ‘clean’ reading of quarterly growth for 2014. We expect the economy grew at a solid annualised pace of 3.0% in Q3. Ahead of this, September durable goods orders (Tues.) are forecast to show some stabilisation following August’s steep 18.4% decline. Consumer confidence surveys from the Conference Board (Tues.) and Uni. of Michigan (Fri.) are also expected to remain relatively upbeat, while the Chicago PMI (Fri.) is predicted to drop back a little in October, but remain at an elevated level.

The FOMC meeting is expected to announce a reduction of $15bn in its monthly pace of bond purchases, effectively bringing an end to their QE programme. While this is widely expected, changes to the accompanying policy statement will attract significant attention. The minutes of the September meeting noted most of the Committee were concerned that a change in the ‘considerable time’ language would lead to an unwanted tightening in financial conditions. Comments from various Fed officials in recent weeks have done little to change this perception and we expect the FOMC to make little change to its policy guidance at this meeting.

Elsewhere, it is a thin week for UK data. Following the 0.7% q/q preliminary estimate for Q3 GDP, attention will turn back to the prospects for Q4. Ahead of the guiding PMI surveys for October, the release of our own Lloyds Bank Business Confidence Barometer (Thurs.) will be watched for an early insight into the strength of activity. Earlier in the week (Tues.) money supply, mortgage approvals and consumer credit are also due. 

 

 

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Amazing Trader EVENT RISK Calendar:


Tue 21 Nov
15:00 US- Existing Homes Sales
23:00 US- Yellen Speech
Wed 22 Nov
13:30 US- Weekly Jobless
13:30 US- Durable Goods
15:00 US- final University of Michigan Survey
15:30 US- EIA Crude
19:00 US- FOMC Minutes
Thu 23 Nov
US/JP- Holiday
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Fri 24 Nov
All Day flash PMIs
09:00 DE- IFO Survey
US- Early Closes

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  • POTENTIAL PRICE RISK: HIGH Mon -- 14:00 GMT EZ- Draghi speaks in Brussels. Looking for any policy hints or bias


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  • POTENTIAL PRICE RISK: HIGH Wed -- 19:00 GMT US- FOMC Policy Minutes. Key policy release


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