February 27th - March 5th
Felix Tshisekedi will succeed his late father Étienne as the leader of the Congolese opposition, focused on removing current President Joseph Kabila from power. Opponents have criticised Kabila of repeatedly delaying elections to stay in power
Germany and Tunisia have agreed on a deal to repatriate rejected asylum seekers. Germany will also contribute funding to job support and businesses for those returning
Israel officially decriminalized marijuana, where users will face a fine instead of charges
Israeli police have begun removing residents out of illegally settled land in Palestine, after an order from the Israeli Supreme Court
China has lowered the target for economic growth this year in its pledge to address its environmental issues
Malaysia has ended visa-free entry for North Korean citizens after Kim Jong-nam was assassinated in the country
North Korea North Korea has launched missile tests again, firing three off the Japanese coast
The European Parliament has voted to end visa-free travel for American citizens to EU countries
The French Republican Party is preparing to oust presidential candidate François Fillon amid his scandal, where his wife was reported to have been paid under an unexisting job
Seeing Russia as a growing military threat, Sweden has brought back military conscription. Next year, potentially 4000 18-year old citizens may be called up
The International Court of Justice will begin processing Ukraine’s request to end Russian support for separatists in eastern Ukraine
Prime Minister Theresa May is expected to invoke Article 50 this month to withdraw Great Britain from the EU. Complete exit from the European Union is expected to be in two years
United States Attorney General Jeff Sessions faces calls to resign amid reports that he had communicated with Russian officials. Sessions had initially testified under oath that he did not make the communications
Mexico has opened legal aid centres across the United States, designed to assist Mexicans if they are deported under Trump’s immigration policy
The International Olympic Committee is investigating the vote for the 2016 Games in Rio de Janeiro among accusations of corruption from French prosecutors
According to central bank data, the Venezuelan government only has $10.5 billion in cash remaining in its foreign reserves
The Fed released its minutes from its last Open Market Committee meeting were they kept interest rates constant. They showed that the Fed’s official were worried about global economic risks to the American economy and that they were divided about when to raise interest rates next. The ECB will also release minutes of its last monetary policy meeting on Thursday.
Thursday will see the two most important Central Bank officials give talks. Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen will appear at a discussion with the last 4 Fed chairs. Mairo Draghi, President of the ECB, will give a presentation on the economic and financial situation of Europe in Lisbon after meeting with the Portuguese President.
The IMF will publish the “analytical chapters” of its World Economic Outlook, preceding the release of its full report in in the middle of April.
French President, Francois Hollande, and German Chancellor, Angela Merkel, will meet in France and give a joint conference. This comes amid mounting problems for Europe from Brexit to the refugee crisis that are having adverse effects on its economy and on business sentiment.
The Canadian Minister of Finance, Bill Morneau, will give a talk on the 2016 budget and government policy towards aiding the middle class
March 25th - April 1st
Several world leaders will fly to Washington for the 2016 Nuclear Security Summit hosted by the American President and the US state department. The Turkish President and the Italian PM are attending. President Obama is scheduled to meet with the Chinese President on the sidelines on Thursday.
The US Labor Department will release job figures on Friday. 200,000 jobs are expected to have been added to the American economy and the jobless rate expected to remain at its 8 year low of 4.9. The American Institute of Supply Management is also expected to release figures that show the index rising, reflecting an improvement in American manufacturing. There is hope that this positive showing will lead to upward movement in US stock prices.
Bank of Canada Deputy Governor, Lynn Patterson, will give a speech on Wednesday titled “Adjusting to the Fall in Commodity Prices: One Step at a Time”. There is an expectation that this is a “multi-year phenomenon” will be reinforced by the Fed. While the debate on whether the benefits of lower commodity prices will help different parts of the economy later on or whether the negative effects are ongoing and will peak in 2018 will likely be discussed.
Chinese official PMI numbers will also be released on Friday and they are expected to show an improvement occurring in March. Non-Manufacturing PMI reflecting services will be closely watched to see if it’s decelerating as it has been a positive support for the Chinese economy as of late.
Japan is also releasing economic figures from consumer spending to housing starts, at the time when the Bank of Japan is considering further easing of monetary policy.
Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen is scheduled to speak at an Economic Club of New York this week. Her remarks are always closely watched given the Fed’s possible interest rate hikes and the state of the international and domestic economy.
March 19th - 25th
President Obama visited Cuba on Monday as a sign of the improving relations between the two countries after several policies the US has made towards Cuba. It is predicted that the Cuban economy will undergo a lot of transformation as a result of the thaw in relations between the two countries.
Canada released its Federal Budget for 2016, with large deficits anticipated for the next 5 years. A monthly child benefit ad infrastructure spending are some of the important components.
Chinese Boao Forum
Chinese government and corporate figures including the Governor of the People’s Bank of China, meet in Hainan for the Boao Forum where several government initiatives are expected to be announced.
US durable goods report
US durable goods orders report will be released on Thursday and it is expected to show a decline in February reflecting weakness in manufacturing and global demand.
March 12th - 19th
The Bank of Japan will release its interest rate decision this Monday. After pushing its benchmark interest rate negative earlier this year, BOJ is not expected to implement any further easing until July.
With inventory-to-sales ratio at multi-year high, February’s Retail Sales data will provide the most recent outlook for consumer spending which accounts for 70% of U.S. GDP. The general consensus is for an increase of 3.4% YoY, slightly up from 3.29% YoY last month.
U.S. headline and core Consumer Price Index (CPI) will be released this Wednesday. This will provide the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) one last look at the inflation outlook before its monetary policy statement later that afternoon.
All eyes of the market will be on the U.S. Federal Reserve Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) statement and the Fed Economic projections on Wednesday, March 16 at 2:00 pm. Interest rate is expected to remain between 25 to 50 basis point with Fed Funds Futures point to a mere 8% possibility of rate hike.
Canadian Consumer Price Index (CPI) data will be released this Friday. Core inflation is expected to stay steady at 2% YoY, while headline inflation is expected to decline to 1.6% YoY due to slumping commodity prices.
March 6th - 12th
Big week ahead for Europe with the ECB meeting and possibly cutting interest rates further into negative territory. It will also review the stimulus programs in place, followed by a press conference by ECB chief Mario Draghi. Elsewhere in Europe, finance ministers will discuss Greece and Cyprus’ adjustment plans, discuss budgets, fiscal policies and a banking union. National leaders will be preoccupied with an emergency summit on the refugee crisis.
Canada will be setting interest rates. The expectation is that rates will be unchanged before the Federal Budget at the end of the month sets the tone for fiscal policy. Employment statistics will be released too, unemployment is expected to remain at 7.2%.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be hosted by President Obama at the White House for a state dinner. Several speeches by Fed Governors will help set expectations for the Fed’s forthcoming interest rate decision.
In Britain, the Bank of England will testify in front of parliament on the economic implications of Brexit. Oral proceedings in the case against Barclay’s manipulative trading start.
A bevy of statistics are coming out of China. Its trade surplus and foreign reserves figures will be released, and they’ll be closely watched to see evidence of stabilization after the last few months where export readings were unreliable and foreign reserves have been falling. Inflation is expected to rise as well. Most importantly, the National People’s Congress meets setting budgets and GDP targets as well as a 5 year economic plan.
24th Annual Media, Internet & Telecom Conference
The 24th Annual Media, Internet & Telecom Conference will be hosted by Deutsche Bank with presentations by industry heavyweights including Verizon, Disney and Snapchat. Payments company, Square will release its first quarterly results since its November IPO with revenue likely to be lower than expected.
Feb. 28th - March 6th
Several important indicators will come out from the US, including its trade balance, automobile sales, and the employment rate. Most indicators seem to be positive with an increase in payroll numbers, factory orders and automobile sales. The downward trend of manufacturing is expected to reach its trough and then raise again afterwards. The trade deficit is expected to increase only slightly.
China’s National People’s Congress, one of China’s most important meetings, will take place this week where economic targets, most importantly, the budget and the targeted GDP are set. This year’s NPC consists of 2,943 party chiefs, government officials, company executives and military commanders hailing from 35 constituencies. Members include everyone from so-called model workers to President Xi Jinping. A five-year development plan is also expected to be announced. The proceedings may provide crucial details on how the government plans to control a slow down in growth while avoiding the dreaded “middle-income trap”.
Canada released its Q4 economic results on March 3rd. Real GDP grew o.6%, following a 0.8% gain in the third quarter. Consumption rose 0.5%. Exports of goods and services fell 0.4% after increasing 2.2% in the previous quarter. The terms of trade, measured by export prices relative to import prices, weakened for the third consecutive quarter.
Brazil’s Central Bank kept the country’s interest rate unchanged as expected given the economic and political troubles the country is facing at this time. The country will also report its GDP growth for 2015 and the number is expected to be negative. The country is also experiencing soaring inflation and the worst economic recession in more than a century.
The Geneva Motor Show opens this week showing cars and industry products and firms.
Feb. 21st - 28th
Revisions to America’s 2015 4th Quarter GDP come out on Friday. Growth is expected to be at 0.5% which makes it the slowest in two years. New homes sales numbers have been released and are lower than estimated. Personal consumption expenditures that are used to gauge inflation will be published. Several Federal Reserve figures will give speeches that will help predict the next move the Fed will make and situate the American economy and its various indicators.
The British pound is delivering its poorest performance in international markets since the Financial Crisis after an announcement was made by David Cameron on plans to exit the European Union (EU).
GDP revisions for several European countries including Germany and France will also be released. Inflation statistics from several European countries come out. There is hope that numbers will allow an expectation of German inflation to rise by the years end. Europe will also see Home Affairs Ministers discuss border issues including more stringent controls like policing borders and internal border checks. This could have ramifications for European labour markets in the future.
The second day of the conference will be held in Washington, hosted by the Practising Law Institute.
The Standing Committee of China’s National People’s Congress meets on Wednesday. Steps will be taken in preparation for the annual meeting next month such as agenda setting.
The Mobile World Congress takes place in Barcelona, the world’s biggest mobile events showcasing products and technology from some of the biggest figures in the industry.
Iran will hold parliamentary elections on the 26th of February. Elections for the Assembly of Experts that are the top clerical body also takes place. The Assembly chooses the Supreme Leader of Iran and the next assembly is expected to choose Ayatollah Khamenei’s successor. This comes at a time when the Iranian economy is slowly being opened to the world with particular importance of its oil sector.
Feb. 14th - 21st
Canada will see several performance indicators this week, including the CPI, retail sales and housing market figures. Improvements in retail sales are expected. The CPI will be watched to see the effect of the currency movement and import and export changes. Provincially, British Columbia will be releasing is annual budget and Provincial Finance Minister Michael de Jong has said that it will be a balanced budget.
The Fed takes the limelight this week as it releases its minutes from its last policy setting meeting at the tail end of January. This is coming at a time when markets are afraid that the Fed might be making the wrong decisions and causing instability in the global markets. Furthermore, several different Fed Presidents will be making speeches on different topics. There is also the expectation that these talks will make it seem unlikely that the Fed will raise rates again at its next meeting.
Staying in the United States. The Consumer Price index will be released showing inflation figures in the US with a decline being anticipated. Industrial Production is expected to have risen when the Producer Price Index is released. This is likely to calm some fears about the interest rate rise as some commentators viewed the rise with a slowing manufacturing sector as a bad decision.
The European Union is teeming with activity as national leaders convene in Brussels for the two day EU Leader’s Summit. Britain’s terms and negotiations on its future in the union and the refugee crisis are likely to best the most important issues. ECB president Mario Draghi will address the European Parliament’s Economic Committee, he will be closely watched for clues on future monetary policy. EU foreign ministers will also convene before the Leader’s Summit as well.
Japanese Q4 GDP numbers will be announced this week and a negative figure seems to be on the books.
Feb. 7th - 14th
Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen will speak in Congress twice this week, once in front of the House Financial Services Committee and again in the Senate Banking Committee. Her argument for raising interest rates gradually is expected and will be closely watched by the market. President Obama will also submit the 2017 fiscal budget to congress, with a 7.5 billion dollar figure for expected spending.
Several Canadian firms listed on the TSX will be releasing earnings reports this week. Performance of the firms that have already released reports has been mixed but with a slight majority having disappointing results.
In the US, the New Hampshire primaries for the Presidential Election will take place. Polling number s suggest Bernie Sanders will come ahead of Hilary Clinton after her win in Iowa last week. The Republican side will be interesting to watch, Trump’s loss last week despite high expectations going into Iowa and Marco Rubio’s surge in popularity has created a lot of discussion.
Defence Minsters of the countries involved in the US coalition fighting ISIS is meeting at the NATO Headquarters with a discussion of potential operations in Libya on the table.
US retail sales for January will come out this week, with an expected rise after December’s drop. Consumer Spending accounts for 70% of the American economy.
UK Prime Minister will make a dinner speech about discussing Britain’s role in the EU. German Chancellor Angela Merkel will also be speaking at the event. Bilateral talks between the two leaders will take place. These will be important given the upcoming referendum about Britain’s future in the EU, the potential for Brexit and next week’s meeting of EU leaders in Brussels.
OPEC will release its monthly oil market report with members’ production figures. The continued slide in oil prices and the ramifications of that on the world economy is a significant cause of concern.
Jan. 31st - Feb. 7th
The U.S. Commerce Department published its first look at the economy’s performance in the 4th quarter of 2015 last Friday. The economy experienced an economic slowdown from the 3rd Quarter’s estimate of 2% growth now down to 0.7%. The report shows that amid a slowdown for consumer spending, business investment has decreased due to rapidly declining oil prices. Through the first 11 months of 2015, the U.S trade deficit also widened 5.5% compared with the same period a year earlier. Due to a strong U.S. dollar, exports fell by 4.6%.
The Institute for Supply Management released its January manufacturing index on Monday. This acts as a gauge of U.S factory activity. It reveals the tanking effects of a strong U.S. dollar and slumping commodity prices that have severely impacted the market for manufactured goods, especially mining equipment. As manufacturing slows, the service sector has continued to expand. Wednesday, the ISM and PMI measures demonstrated they are less vulnerable to international headwinds.
Part of a wider IMF strategy to resolve sovereign debt crises, the IMF Executive Board announced that it has approved an important reform that applies to the institution’s policy on lending to countries that request large-scale financing. The reform includes the removal of the “systemic exemption” created in 2010 for the purpose of promoting more efficient resolution of sovereign debt problems. Read more about the evolution and impact of “system risk” in IMF lending here.
After disappointing growth and downward revision to previous quarters at the end of 2015 by the Office of National Statistics (ONS), the BoE will cut its growth and inflation forecasts. Interest rates are expected to stay at a record low for the long run amid rising global risks. Analysts believe the Bank will not raise interest rates from their current level of 0.5pc until the second half of 2017.
Weak China manufacturing data (PMI) showing deterioration for a sixth straight month choked off a rally in emerging-market stocks and currencies from last week. This has stoked concern that the slowdown in its economy will spread to other developing nations. Currencies that experienced declines included the Russian ruble, South Africa’s rand, and India’s equity benchmark. Most developing-nation currencies weakened against the dollar on Monday driven by data releases and declining commodity prices.
Jan 24th - 31st
The Fed Meeting has become the highlight of the week. The FOMC released its statement on Wednesday, January 27 at 11:00 am PST. The U.S. Federal Reserve made an attempt to calm the market with a dovish statement after the recent turmoil in global equity markets and weak economic data. Fed funds futures now point to a 90 percent chance of the fed leaving interest rate unchanged at 0.25-0.50 percent.
The Bank of Japan is expected to keep interest rates unchanged at 0 percent this Thursday with speculation that further stimulus programme may be signaled amid at unexpectedly low inflation and the recent appreciation of the Yen.
U.S. GDP will be reported this Friday, with a consensus of slowing economic growth in the fourth quarter and a consensus of 0.8% annualized rate for 2015.
A widening in the trade gap and disappointing inventory data are expected to have held down growth. Personal spending is also expected to have slowed. Recent data suggests that consumer spending and exports have been weak.
Canada will release its fourth quarter GDP data this Friday after the Bank of Canada’s (BoC) kept its benchmark interest rate unchanged at 0.50 percent last week. A consensus forecast of 0 percent growth is expected for the fourth quarter with low oil prices continue to be drag on the economy and limited growth in export despite the loonie hitting a decade low.
Jan. 17th - 24th
The World Economic Forum in Davos takes place this week from Wednesday to Saturday. Several of the world’s most important figures will convene to the Swiss town. Economic issues are likely to be discussed especially with the current economic climate. Other important issues such as migration will also be debated.
The Bank of Canada will set interest rates this Wednesday. Rates are expected to stay the same even though some predict an interest rate cut. This comes at a time when the oil price slump and other variables are harming the Canadian economy. Retail sales and the CPI measuring inflation will also be released then giving an update on the economy’s performance.
Important numbers are also coming out of the US. Quarterly earnings reports for several important S&P500 companies will be released. Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and other banks, as well as GE, IBM, Delta and other corporations will release their reports, as well. CPI for December will give an indication of the state of the US economy and the effects of the Fed’s historic rates rise, inflation is expected to be up showing the strength of the American economy and keeping it on course for future rate increases.
The IMF will release its semi-annual World Economic Outlook updated policy report. It is entitled “Subdued Demand, Diminished Prospects” and comes at a time of economic uncertainty and problems from commodity and oil price slumps, Chinese economic weakness among other risk factors and problems.
The European Central Bank will be setting its monetary policy. It is expected to be unchanged after the expansionary measures at the end of 2015. Weak inflation in the Euro Area are likely to push for further expansionary measures later on with the ECB president expected to give hints. This comes during the week when the Euromoney’s Central and Eastern European Forum 2016 takes place bringing together several regional central bank governors and finance ministers.
The Asian Investment Infrastructure Bank had its opening ceremony this Saturday. The AIIB is often touted as a competitor to the World Bank and US dominance. Australian Prime minister will be on a visit to the US which is interesting timing given that Australia went against American wishes and joined the bank in 2015.