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Week Ahead Economic Preview: Week of 20 May 2019

  • Flash PMI surveys to provide insights into global growth trends in May, including updates for the US, Eurozone, Japan and Australia. PMI surveys indicated the slowest global economic growth since 2016 in April; has the slowdown worsened in May as trade jitters intensified?
  • China-US technology wars in focus, with our special report assessing the impact
  • Japan's first quarter GDP and manufacturing performance under scrutiny
  • European parliamentary elections and general elections in Australia and India

Economic data will take a back seat to escalating US-China trade tensions, the impact of which is the focus of our special report. Similarly, European parliamentary elections will be closely watched, especially in the UK where the leading parties look set for heavy defeats amid Brexit chaos. Analysts will also be watching for any changing balance between populist and centre-ground parties elsewhere in Europe, notably in Italy. In Asian, a key focus will also be on the outcome of the Indian and Australian elections and economic policy implications.

However, that's not to say the week doesn't see some major data releases. With the US Federal Reserve having changed tack from preparing the markets for a rate hike in 2019 to a more dovish stance, FOMC meeting minutes will be scoured for appetite for the next move to be a rate cut. Flash PMI data for May from IHS Markit will add to the picture for second quarter US GDP growth and inflation trends: the recent surveys showed a slowing in the pace of expansion in April alongside weaker price pressures.

In the eurozone, flash PMI surveys will also help determine whether a rebound in GDP growth will fade again in the second quarter. Any strengthening could see bond markets think twice about further stimulus from the ECB. UK inflation and retail sales numbers are also updated, though will do little to change the immediate policy picture for a central bank paralysed by Brexit uncertainty.

In Asia-Pacific, Japan's GDP data for the first quarter are eagerly awaited, with stagnation pencilled-in. A disappointing GDP number will add to concerns about the economy's ability to withstand a scheduled sales tax rise later this year.

Flash PMI data are also updated for Japan and Australia which, together with the US and Eurozone numbers, will help provide a steer on global economic growth trends, especially for manufacturing, where growing trade tensions have now pushed worldwide exports lower for an eighth successive month.

Download the report for the full content which includes:

  1. Global overview
  2. Key diary events
  3. US week ahead
  4. Europe week ahead
  5. Asia Pacific week ahead
  6. Asia Pacific Special Report

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APAC commentary: Rajiv Biswas or Bernard Aw

European and US PMI commentary: Chris Williamson

© 2019, IHS Markit Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.

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Purchasing Managers' Index™ (PMI™) data are compiled by IHS Markit for more than 40 economies worldwide. The monthly data are derived from surveys of senior executives at private sector companies, and are available only via subscription. The PMI dataset features a headline number, which indicates the overall health of an economy, and sub-indices, which provide insights into other key economic drivers such as GDP, inflation, exports, capacity utilization, employment and inventories. The PMI data are used by financial and corporate professionals to better understand where economies and markets are headed, and to uncover opportunities.

Learn how to access and receive PMI data



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