Major markets may have moved into a summer lull, but interest could heat up next week, with a slew of key data announcements across major economies. 

Watch for: 

  • US data – Retail Sales, Fed chair Powell speaking and FOMC minutes released
  • Europe & Asia – Japan Q2 GDP; China industrial production and retail sales; UK unemployment, inflation and retail sales; RBNZ monetary policy; and Australian unemployment
  • LatAm – Q2 GDP for Chile and Colombia

US data: 

  • US Retail Sales (Tue 17th August 1230GMT) July core +0.2% MoM exp (+1.3% June)
  • Fed chair Powell speaking (Tue 17th August, 1730GMT)
  • FOMC minutes (Wed, 18th August, 1800GMT)

US Retail Sales will be the big focus stateside this week. Sales remained strong in June despite the fears that the supply side shortages would take their toll. This will once more be the fear in July, with signs that inflation is beginning to roll over. The consensus suggests that core sales will only rise by +0.2% on the month which would weigh on the annual year on year data as strong comparatives from last summer drop out.

Fed chair Powell will always grab the headlines when he speaks. This will be the first opportunity for him to react to the strong Nonfarm Payrolls data last week, so traders will certainly be on tenterhooks. We also look for the FOMC minutes, although the employment picture has moved on apace since the end of July.

Market Reaction: 

  • USD will slide back on any negative surprise in Retail Sales. The impact on risk will be uncertain, as traders weigh the impact on the economy and implications for Fed tightening.

Latin America: 

  • Argentina CPI (Mon 16th Aug, 1800GMT)
  • Colombia Q2 GDP (Tue 17th Aug, 1700GMT)
  • Chile Q2 GDP (Wed 18th Aug)

There is no Brazilian data this week, however, looking elsewhere in the LatAm region we see Q2 growth is the theme for Colombia and Chile. A strong vaccination programme has put Chile on a solid path for a strong economic recovery in 2021. The government is looking for +7.5% (having recently increased its projection from +6% previously). After +0.3% in Q1, markets will be primed for a strong number in Q2. 

Market Reaction

  • COP and CHP will both be reactive to respective GDP data.

Europe & Asia: 

  • Japan Q2 GDP (Sun 15th Aug, 2350GMT) QoQ +0.1% (-1.0% in Q1)
  • Chinese data (Mon 16th Aug, 0200GMT) - Industrial Production +7.9% exp, Retail Sales +10.9% exp, Unemployment 5.0% exp
  • UK unemployment (Tue 17th Aug, 0600GMT) 4.8% exp, UK CPI (Wed 18th Aug, 0600GMT) +2.3% exp (+2.5% in June), UK Retail Sales (Fri 20th Aug, 0600GMT) +0.5% MoM exp)
  • Reserve Bank of New Zealand monetary policy (Wed 18th Aug, 0200GMT) +25 basis points to +0.50% exp (+0.25% in July)
  • Australia Unemployment (Thu 19th Aug, 0130GMT) 5.0% exp

Chinese big sector data can frame the narrative for risk appetite early in the week. Positive surprises would be risk positive and allow AUD, NZD to perform well. However, GBP traders have plenty to keep them occupied closer to home, with a raft of UK data. Inflation has been rising sharply and is well above the Bank of England’s 2% target. Both core and headline CPI are expected to begin to normalise lower, but any upside inflation surprise would support GBP on an elevated potential for Bank of England tapering.

The RBNZ is expected to be the first of the major banks to hike interest rates in the post-pandemic era. A full +25 basis points are priced in and expected, so any failure to do so would see a sharp sell-off on NZD. Analysts are looking for this to be the first of maybe two hikes this year though and setting the RBNZ on this course can pull NZD sustainably higher in the coming months.

Market Reaction: 

  • GBP reacting to UK CPI surprises.
  • NZD to build a path to outperformance on the back of RBNZ rate hikes
  • Broad risk assets reactive to China data