Eurozone Growth in Focus Amid Global Recession Fears
The Eurozone’s growth is in focus amid global recession fears which have increased due to a technical recession in the US, and the first strike for the UK – one quarter of negative growth and high inflation. The UK’s inflation rate rose to 10.1 percent in July on an annual basis, higher than expected, spelling out more interest rate hikes in the near future.
Preliminary growth figures for the Eurozone are out today at a time when traders and investors are in the middle of tightening monetary policy on one side of the economic vise, and inflation on the other side. GDP growth is the only force to stop the vise from squeezing sentiment.
The bloc is expected to have grown at a rate of 0.7 percent on a quarterly basis, unchanged from Q1. On a yearly basis, the market expects growth at the level of 4 percent in the second quarter, which is also unchanged compared to the same period last year.
Relative to the US and UK, the European Union appears to be on a growth track, provided the figures come in at the expected levels. Any surprises may move the EUR currency crosses: an upside result could support the bloc’s common currency and a downside surprise may result in a sell-off.
In more global growth-related news, the US releases Retail Sales figures for July later today. Retail Sales are expected to have fallen from 1 percent in June to 0.1 percent in July, reflecting weaker spending amid high inflation and caution towards a rising interest rate environment.
Speaking of rising interest rates, the FOMC releases its Minutes today and the report will likely set expectations for the upcoming rate decision in September. The Federal Reserve has been the most aggressive central bank in terms of hiking interest rates to control high inflation, but as inflationary pressures eased slightly in the US, this and weaker GDP growth could be taken into consideration in September.
Another red-flagged trading event is Australia’s Unemployment Rate for July, due out tomorrow, Thursday, August 18. Unemployment is expected to remain at the level of 3.5 percent, unchanged from June’s result.
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