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Australia: Reserve Bank Board meeting in focus

  • The Reserve Bank Board meeting is the stand-out event in what shapes to be a relatively quiet week for economic and financial news.
  • The week kicks off on Monday with June readings on the inflation gauge from Melbourne Institute and job advertisements from ANZ.
  • On Tuesday the AiGroup’s services activity gauge is expected to lift further in June as the economy continues to gradually re-open after the virus shutdown in April.
  • Also on Tuesday the regular weekly survey on consumer confidence is issued by ANZ and Roy Morgan. And Commonwealth Bank releases the weekly measure on household spending using credit and debit card figures.
  • Later in the day on Tuesday (2.30pm Sydney time) the Reserve Bank releases the monetary policy decision. While there won’t be any changes in policy settings, the Bank may produce some more upbeat comments on the economic outlook given the relative success in re-starting the economy.
  • On Thursday, ABS releases the May Lending Indicators The release includes data on new finance commitments for housing, personal, business and commercial purposes.
  • The value of home loans fell by 4.8 per cent in April with owner-occupier loans down by 5.0 per cent and investor loans down by 4.2 per cent. Also the data showed that a record $7.9 billion of owner occupier home loans were refinanced in April.
  • By value, first home buyer loan commitments accounted for 37.4 per cent of all owner-occupier home loans in April (excluding refinancing) – the highest share in over a decade (since December 2009).

Overseas: Inflation data in focus

  • A relatively quiet week is in prospect for new economic data in the United States and China.
  • The week kicks off on in the US on Monday with the results of the June survey of purchasing managers in the services sector. This survey is conducted by the Institute of Supply Management. The index is tipped to rise from 45.4 to 48.2, still short of a 50 reading that would signify expansion of the sector.
  • Also on Monday the rival Markit purchasing managers index is released. Markit releases results of the services purchasing managers index and the composite reading of both services and manufacturing activity.
  • On Tuesday in the US, the usual weekly Johnson Redbook chain store sales figures are released. Also Investor’s Business Daily (IBD) and TechnoMetrica Institute of Policy and Politics (TIPP) release their Economic Optimism index for July. And the Bureau of Labor Statistics releases the May job openings and labour turnover survey (JOLTs) series of new job opportunities.
  • The Economic Optimism index stood at 47.0 in June, the lowest level since September 2016. And according to the JOLTs survey, the number of job openings in the US declined by 965,000 to 5.046 million in April, the lowest level since December 2014.
  • In the US on Wednesday, weekly data on US mortgage applications from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA) is released with consumer credit figures. Consumer credit fell US$68.7 billion in April after declining US$12 billion in March. They have been the only two monthly declines in credit in almost nine years.
  • On Thursday, the weekly data on new claims for unemployment insurance (jobless claims) are issued with wholesale inventories data.
  • On Thursday in China, data on consumer and producer prices are released. In May, consumer prices were up 2.4 per cent on the year while producer prices are down by 3.7 per cent.
  • There is also an inflation reading in the US on Friday – producer prices. The core measure (excludes food and energy) fell by 0.1 per cent in May to be up just 0.3 per cent on the year.

Published by Craig James, Chief Economist, CommSec