If you’re hankering after “event risk”, look no further. Europe can offer top central bank meetings, front line economic data, a debt auction and more political risk than you can shake a stick at today.
The Bank of England has a fairly dubious record of forecasting the UK economy, but 30 years ago it was right about one thing – how our use of cash would change.
The Bank of England will publish the minutes of Mark Carney’s first policy meeting earlier this month which will pored over for signs of how the debate about forward guidance – it’s all the rage in the central banking world now – went, and whether that may herald more money printing or act as a proxy for looser policy.
After the European Central Bank broke with tradition and gave forward guidance that interest rates will not rise for an “extended period” and could even fall, some of its members – including French policymakers Benoit Coeure and Christian Noyer, and Bundesbank chief Jens Weidmann – head to an annual gathering in the south of France.
This could be a perfect storm of a day for the euro zone.
Portugal’s prime minister will attempt to shore up his government after the resignation of his finance and foreign ministers in successive days. The latter is threatening to pull his party out of the coalition but has decided to talk to the premier, Pedro Passos Coelho, to try and keep the show on the road.
Call it the great wagon circling.
Central bankers are talking tough in the face of the wild gyrations in financial markets. But it’s becoming increasingly clear they are sweating – and drawing up contingency plans to assuage the panic that’s taken hold since Chairman Ben Bernanke last week sketched out the Fed’s plan for winding down its QE3 bond-buying program. U.S. policymakers in particular must have predicted investors would react strongly. But now that longer-term borrowing costs have spiked to near a two-year high, they look to be entering full-blown damage control.
As is now customary for retiring central bank chiefs, Bank of England Governor Mervyn King has received a warm – but not a standing – ovation from economists for his time in charge.
Even if they can’t agree how much Britain’s Help to Buy mortgage guarantee scheme will boost the housing market, analysts in the latest Reuters poll are united by an understanding of its dangers.
In his valedictory Quarterly Inflation Report, Bank of England Governor Mervyn King shone a ray of light on the British economy, saying it should grow 0.5 percent in the current quarter.