As the great and the good of global economics and high finance convene for the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, traders will be concerned about a few, more mundane, matters. 

Earnings season on Wall Street gets into full swing this week, while on this side of the pond the European Central Bank (ECB) provides the highlight of the macro-economic calendar. 


Last month the ECB opted to extend the duration of its asset purchase programme by three months to the end of 2017, whilst slightly reducing the size of monthly purchases from €80bn a month to €60bn from April. Interest rates remain negative.

Most analysts expect the ECB to hold steady when the Governing Council meets in Frankfurt on Thursday. Signs of improved economic activity across the bloc should make for a relatively upbeat Mario Draghi, who will answer questions from journalists as part of the usual post-meeting press conference.

Despite higher inflation, which accelerated to a three-year high of 1.1% in December, ratings agency Standard & Poor’s doesn’t expect the ECB to depart from its accommodative monetary policy until 2018 at the earliest. 

Inflation readings

For those with a fondness for watching central banks it’s hard to go very far without reference to inflation and this week we have a cornucopia of reports. Italy’s CPI comes in on Monday and will be closely watched after 2016 saw the country’s firstly annual fall in prices since 1959.

On Tuesday it’s the turn of the UK and the latest inflation reading will show the extent to which the weak pound is driving up prices. Defying some of the worst fears of economists, inflation hasn’t yet got out of control, but with producer prices rising fast, it’s expected that the CPI figure will rise over the medium-term.

Wednesday sees the release of the US CPI inflation report as well as the final reading for the Eurozone in December.


US earnings season gets into full swing. Financials dominate, with Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley, Citigroup and American Express among the Wall Street giants due to report their fourth quarter earnings. Netflix, the latest tech darling, is due to report on Wednesday after its share price recently hit a record high.

In the UK, there is not a lot of corporate data but watch for trading updates from Greggs, Halfords and Ladbrokes Coral.


Over in the Alps, keep your ears tuned to the World Economic Forum (WEF), the annual bean feast for economists, bankers and policymakers. Surely the main topic of conversation will be anti-globalisation policies and the potential impact of Donald Trump on the global economy?

Trump’s inauguration

Finally, on January 20th the time will come for Barack Obama to official hand over the keys of the White House to Donald Trump. What will the markets make of the new president when he actually starts to issue executive orders? What might those first decrees be?  The Trump trade has been roaring along since November and come Friday the new world order will take shape. Mr Trump will take the Oath of Office at noon local time (17:00 GMT).

Economic Calendar

(All times GMT)

Monday, 16 January

All day - Martin Luther King Day - US bank holiday 

00:01 - Rightmove house price index

09:00 - Italy CPI inflation

Tuesday, 17 January

04:30 - Japan industrial production

09:30 - UK CPI/PPI inflation (December), house price index (November)

10:00 - German ZEW economic sentiment

13:30 - Empire State Manufacturing Index

Wednesday, 18 January

All day - World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland

07:00 - German final CPI 

09:30 - UK average earnings, unemployment data

10:00 - Eurozone final CPI

13:30 - US CPI inflation

14:25 - US capacity utilisation rate, industrial production

15:00 - Bank of Canada monetary policy statement, interest rate decision

15:00 - US NAHB housing market index

19:00 - Fed Beige Book

Thursday, 19 January

All day - World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland

00:30 - Australian employment data

08:15 - Swiss PPI inflation

12:45 - ECB interest rate decision, monetary policy announcement

13:30 - ECB press conference

13:30 - US building permits, housing starts, weekly unemployment claims, Philly Fed manufacturing index

13:30 - Canadian manufacturing sales

16:00 - US crude oil inventories

Friday, 20 January

All day - World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland

02:00 - China GDP, industrial production, retail sales figures

07:00 - German PPI inflation

09:30 - UK retail sales

13:30 - Canadian retail sales, CPI inflation

17:00 - Donald Trump sworn in as 45th president of the United States

Earnings Calendar

Tuesday, 17 January

Morgan Stanley (MS) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 0.649

Greggs (GRG) - Trading statement

Wednesday, 18 January

Charles Schwab Corp (SCHW) - Q4/2016/EPS estimate 0.356

Citigroup (C) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 1.129 

Goldman Sachs (GS) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 4.752

Netflix (NFLX) - Q4/2016 - EPS estimate 0.132

US Bancorp (USB) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 0.809

Ladbrokes Coral Group (LCL) - Trading statement

Thursday, 19 January

American Express (AXP) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 0.990

Bank of New York Mellon Corp (BK) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 0.771

Halfords (HFD) - Trading statement

Friday, 20 January

General Electric (GE) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 0.459

Schlumberger (SLB) - Q4/2016, EPS estimate 0.270

Source: Bloomberg

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