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    Week Ahead – Services PMI and central bank meetings from UK, Japan and Australia in focus

    The week ahead see some important data releases and central bank meetings.

    Monday begins with important PMI data out of the Eurozone and the UK. The final estimate of the Services PMI for the Eurozone is expected to remain unchanged at 54.0 in September.

    Meanwhile, the UK services PMI is expected to be revised to 56.0 from a prior estimate of 55.6 for the month of September.

    The UK will be in focus on Thursday when the Bank of England holds its monetary policy meeting. While the benchmark interest rate is expected to hold at the record low 0.5% and the asset purchase facility at 375 billion pounds, what will be important to watch will be the MPC vote count. This shows how the BoE policy makers voted in the prior policy meeting and shows how many were in favour of a rate hike.

    Other UK data include manufacturing production data due on Wednesday. It is expected to improve to 0.3% in August versus a prior decline of 0.8%.

    US economic data next week will include the nation’s trade balance on Tuesday and the weekly jobless claims on Thursday. More importantly the FOMC meeting minutes are due on Thursday and will attract a lot of attention as investors will look for any more insight into the Fed’s policy plans. The Fed said it remains on track for a rate hike before year end depending on the data.

    Shifting to Australia, the focus will be on the Reserve Bank of Australia’s monetary policy meeting on Tuesday. The main cash rate is expected to remain at 2.00%. The statement that follows the interest rate decision will be important for any comments on the health of the Australian economy especially with regards to the recent economic data from China, its main trading partner.

    The Bank of Japan will holds its policy meeting on Tuesday and Wednesday followed by the release of a policy statement on Wednesday. Some think the BoJ should ease monetary policy further although no move is expected at this coming meeting.

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