AUSTRALIAN DIARY: Everything you need to know about the week ahead for markets

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There’s a deluge of local data to kick off the new month, led by partial growth indicators early in the week ahead of Wednesday’s Q3 GDP reading.

There’s also October retail sales figures and the RBA will make its monthly interest rate announcement (both on Tuesday).

Looking abroad, markets are likely to be focused on Friday’s November employment figures in the US which include data on average hourly earnings growth.

US stocks had a wild session to end the week, initially falling by 1.6% amid political turmoil before rallying after Senate Republicans announced they had the numbers to pass the Trump administration’s proposed tax-cut bill.

The tax bill was subsequently approved in the Senate just after 2am Saturday morning in the US — here’s a quick rundown of what’s in it.

On currency markets, it was a big session for the commodity bloc on Friday night as the AUD climbed but was outdone by stronger rallies in the Kiwi and the Canadian dollar.

The Aussie dollar closed the week at 0.7613 US cents.


The ABS will release Q3 data on company profits and inventory levels on Monday, followed by the national current account balance on Tuesday.

Those data points will feed into Q3 GDP figures on Wednesday, with the market forecasting quarterly growth 0.7% leaving the annual rate at 3.0% — up from 1.8% in the June quarter.

October retail sales data on Tuesday is forecast to show growth of 0.2%. A bad miss in September added to the recent downtrend in the sector, which is struggling amid high competition and doubts around consumer spending.

Those threats to consumption — stemming from low wage growth — were highlighted by the RBA in the minutes to its November meeting.

While rates are almost certain to stay on hold at the RBA’s December meeting on Tuesday, the bank’s accompanying statement will be analysed for any sign of changes to its current economic outlook.

On Thursday, the ABS has Australia’s balance of trade figures for October, with current forecasts for a surplus of $1.5 billion.

And rounding out a big week of data, markets will be watching for evidence of further declines in investor lending when October housing finance figures are released on Friday.

Investor loans hit a 15-month low in September, reflecting the impact of macroprudential measures taken by Australia’s banking regulator, APRA, to cool investor activity in the housing market.

Here’s this week’s domestic schedule, via ANZ:


It’s a quieter week of data ahead internationally. Composite PMI figures for the UK and Europe, on Monday and Tuesday respectively, will give another update on the global growth picture which has been gaining momentum in recent months.

There’s also the final reading for Q3 GDP in the Eurozone on Tuesday, and Canada’s central bank will make its interest rate announcement on Wednesday night with rates expected to stay on hold at 1.0%.

Markets will also be watching developments on the political front. There’s tax-cut legislation and the Russia investigation in the US, further Brexit discussions between the UK and Europe, and indications that a ruling coalition government in Germany may still be formed.

US employment figures will be the headline release of the week globally, with non-farm payrolls expected to climb by 198,000 in November with average hourly earnings growth of 0.3%.

The full schedule of key international data is below (also via ANZ):

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