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Jackson Hole Summit In The Spotlight, U.K. Q2 GDP Data Awaited

Aug, 20th 18:13

U.S. shares closed lower on Friday. The Dow Jones Industrial Average dropped 0.35 percent, to close at 21,674.51 and to end the week 0.8 percent lower. The S&P 500 and the Nasdaq Composite lost 0.18 percent and 0.09 percent after the close on Friday. For the week, the S&P 500 shed 0.7 percent while the Nasdaq fell 0.6 percent.

While doubts about U.S. President Donald Trump’s ability to deliver his economic agenda are growing, terrorist attack in Barcelona on Thursday, which left 13 people dead and more than 100 injured, contributed to shake investors’ confidence.

U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday did not only decry the removal of pro-slavery Civil War Confederacy monuments in Charlottesville, Virginia, but also unleashed attacks on two Republican U.S. senators, Jeff Flake and Lindsey Graham.

The dollar was hit hard as a spate of unfortunate events mounted concerns over Trump’s ability to work with lawmakers in his own party to win passage of his stimulus plans, such as tax cuts and infrastructure spending.

In the week ahead, investors will pay attention to an annual meeting of top central bankers and economists hosted by the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The meeting is set to take place from Thursday to Saturday and is expected to provide fresh policy signals from the world’s most powerful central banks as Fed chair Yellen and ECB Governor Mario Draghi are due to deliver speeches.

U.S. housing data will be in the spotlight as the Commerce Department is to publish a report on new home sales for July on Wednesday. The report is expected to show an advance of 0.5% to 610,000, following a gain of 0.8% in June.

After that, the National Association of Realtors is to release data on existing home sales for July on Thursday. Analysts forecast an increase of 0.9% to 5.57 million, following a slump of 1.8% a month earlier.

In addition to housing-related data, this week’s calendar also features reports on flash Markit manufacturing and service sector activity surveys due on Wednesday, initial jobless claims on Thursday and durable goods orders on Friday.

Turning to the Euro, the single currency was higher at the close on Friday, adding 0.32% to trade at $1.1760. The euro zone is to publish preliminary data on manufacturing and service sector activity for August on Wednesday, amid expectations for a modest decline.

Meanwhile, the Office for National Statistics is to produce a second estimate on U.K. economic growth for the second quarter at on Thursday. The data is expected to confirm the preliminary figure that indicated economy grew 0.3% in the three months ended June 30 and advanced at the rate of 1.7% on a year-over-year basis.

The greenback fell to four month lows against the Japanese currency on Friday, closing at 109.18 in late trade and down 0.36%. Japan’s Statistics Bureau will publish July inflation figures on Thursday amid expectations calling for the headline figure to rise 0.5% year-on-year and extend the rally to the seventh straight month of annual increases.