US inflation


The main event on the economic calendar looks set to be the monthly CPI release in the US, which  will be assessed for its potential impact on monetary policy. Firming inflation expectations have seen bond yields climb but have yet to do much for the US dollar.

A month ago, the data for January showed CPI rose 0.5% against projections of a 0.3% increase. Annually, prices were up 2.1%, ahead of the 1.9% expected.

Another rise in inflationary pressures would likely boost the case for the Fed to raise rates more quickly in 2018, with markets increasing betting on policymakers to pull the trigger this month.

Trade wars?


Following last week’s announcement of tariffs on steel and aluminium, combined with the resignation of Gary Cohn, market attention will be firmly on whether the trade skirmish escalates into all-out war. Has Donald Trump ignited a global trade war or will, in the face of dissent among Republicans and a firm response from the EU, make him blink?

Markets had been pretty sanguine about the tariffs – by the time Cohn resigned, US equities were still higher than they were when Trump first announced his tariffs. The prospect of a full-on trade war was talked down and regarded as a small tail risk. Many felt Cohn and others would stop Trump from launching an all-out trade war.

With Cohn – seen as a moderating influence – gone and the mercantilist genie out of the bottle, the likelihood of a full-on trade war has increased. The focus this week is the extent of any retaliation by the EU/China, and any ensuing counter measures by the White House.


UK Spring Statement


The annual Budget event now takes place in the autumn with the Spring Statement from Britain’s chancellor taking on less significance. Nevertheless, with Brexit top of the agenda and continuing to weigh on the pound, market participants will be paying attention when Philip Hammond takes to the despatch box on Wednesday.

So what should we expect? One, there will be no tax changes and no spending increases. But there will be an updated set of UK economic forecasts, which could surprise to the upside if the recent economic data can be relied upon.

The Office for Budget Responsibility slashed economic forecasts in November as it revised estimates of productivity. But rising tax receipts and an elimination of the budget deficit – the first since July 2002 – means the OBR could be forced to revise its estimates higher. Extra wiggle room will be a welcome relief for the chancellor, who will no doubt seek to bulk up his Brexit ‘war chest’ rather than spend more.



Nothing of note in the US, but still plenty of FTSE and DAX stocks to consider. An interesting smattering of results comes on Wednesday with Balfour Beatty plc (BBY), Dignity plc (DTY), Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HIK), Morrison (Wm) Supermarkets (MRW), Prudential plc (PRU), Adidas (ADS) and E.ON (EOAN) due to report.


Economic Calendar

(All times GMT)

Sunday, 11 March

US and Canada Daylight Savings Time Shift (market opening times may be affected depending on your location)

Monday, 12 March

06:00 – Japan preliminary machine tool orders

23:50 – Japan PPI inflation

Tuesday, 13 March

00:30 – Australia NAB business confidence

09:00 – Italian quarterly unemployment rate

10:00 – German ZEW economic sentiment

11:30 – UK Budget Spring Statement

12:30 – US CPI and core CPI inflation

21:45 – New Zealand current account

23:50 – Japan core machinery orders, monetary policy meeting minutes

Wednesday, 14 March

02:00 – China industrial production, fixed asset investment

07:00 – German final CPI inflation

10:00 – Eurozone employment change, industrial production

12:30 – US retail sales, PPI inflation

14:30 – US crude oil inventories

21:45 – New Zealand GDP

Thursday, 15 March

07:45 – French final CPI inflation

08:15 – Swiss PPI inflation

08:30 – Swiss National Bank Libor rate, monetary policy assessment

12:30 – US Empire State manufacturing index, Philly Fed manufacturing index, import prices, weekly unemployment claims

21:30 – New Zealand Business NZ manufacturing index

Friday, 16 March

04:30 – Japan revised industrial production

10:00 – Eurozone final CPI, core CPI inflation

12:30 – Canada foreign securities bulletin, manufacturing sales

12:30 – US building permits, housing starts

13:15 – US industrial production, capacity utilization rate

Corporate Calendar


Monday, 12 March

Clarkson plc (CKN) – final results

Hutchison China Meditech (HCM) – final results

Polymetal International plc (POLY) – final results

Innogy (IGY) – Y/2017, EPS estimate 2.236

Tuesday, 13 March

Close Brothers Group plc (CBG) – interim results

Antofagasta Holdings (ANTO) – final results

Applegreen plc (APGN) – final results

Computacenter plc (CCC) – final results

Fevertree Drinks plc (FEVR) – final results

Glenveagh Properties Plc (GLV) – final results

TP ICAP plc (TCAP) – final results

RWE (RWE) – Y/2017, EPS estimate 1.977

Wednesday, 14 March

Advanced Medical Solutions Group plc (AMS) – final results

Balfour Beatty plc (BBY) – final results

Dignity plc (DTY) – final results

Hikma Pharmaceuticals (HIK) – final results

Morrison (Wm) Supermarkets (MRW) – final results

Prudential plc (PRU) – final results

Adidas (ADS) – Y/2017, EPS estimate 6.660

E.ON (EOAN) – Y/2017, EPS estimate 0.635

Thursday, 15 March

OneSavings Bank plc (OSB) – final results

Portmeirion Group Plc (PMP) – final results

Savills plc (SVS) – final results

Spirax-Sarco Engineering plc (SPX) – final results

Amryt Pharma plc (AMYT) – trading update

Deutsche Lufthansa (LHA) – Y/2017, EPS estimate 4.678

Friday, 16 March

J D Wetherspoon plc (JDW) – interim results

Tiffany & Co (TIF) – Q4/2018, EPS estimate 1.635


Sources: Bloomberg/Companies

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