Markets will be on the lookout for mining and manufacturing updates from SA this week, along with the latest trade data from China.
Economists and investors will pay close attention to a series of central bank meetings this week. Officials in Kenya, Australia and England, along with policymakers at the European Central Bank, will announce their latest monetary policy decisions over the coming days.
On the data docket, markets will be on the lookout for mining and manufacturing updates from South Africa along with the latest employment figures from the United States and trade data from China. Here is your guide.
South Africa will also report September's mining and manufacturing statistics on Thursday. South Africa's manufacturing output rose at the slowest pace in five months in August, decelerating to 0.2% growth from a revised 5.5% in July. Analysts at 4CAST expect that output – which accounts for 15% of South Africa's economy – declined 1.6% from a year earlier in September.
Results from the Bureau for Economic Research's October manufacturing purchasing managers' index – released last week – suggest that last month's numbers will look better. The forward-looking measure moved into expansion territory in October after falling into contraction territory for the first time in five-months in September.
Kenya's central bank will announce its latest rates decision on Tuesday. Officials held the country's benchmark rate steady at 8.5% at their two most recent meetings and are widely expected to do so again this week.
Data released last week showed that the inflation rate in East Africa's largest economy unexpectedly slowed to 7.8% in October from 8.3% in September. Despite the decline in price pressures, inflation remained above the 7.5% upper limit of the central bank's target range and risks to the inflation outlook remain. As a result, policymakers are likely to wait for further data before taking action on rates.
Elsewhere on the continent this week, Morocco will release third quarter unemployment data and Nigeria will report its second quarter current account balance. Ghana and Uganda will update on money supply and Egypt, Ghana, Angola and South Africa will report their reserve positions.
America's commerce department will release factory orders data covering August and September on Monday. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg expect orders to have increased by 0.3% in August, after falling 2.4% in July, and by 1.7% in September.
On Tuesday, attention will turn to the Institute for Supply Management's latest non-manufacturing index. Consensus is that the forward-looking gauge held steady at 54.5 last month. Any reading above 50 indicates expansion.
On Thursday, an advance estimate of third quarter gross domestic product (GDP) growth is likely to show that the world's largest economy slowed to 2% growth in the third quarter from a 2.5% expansion in the second.
Weekly jobless claims figures, also due for release on Thursday, are likely to show that 335 000 Americans filed for initial jobless benefits in the week ended November 2, down from 340 000 in the week prior.
Finally, on Friday, America's monthly employment situation report is expected to show that nonfarm payrolls rose by 120 000 last month, down from a 148 000 gain in September. The US unemployment rate likely edged up to 7.3% from 7.2% previously.
September's personal income and outlays (spending) report, also due for release at week's end, is likely to show that incomes rose 0.3% in September, down from a 0.4% gain in August. Consumer spending likely climbed 0.2% in September after rising 0.3% in August.
Monetary policy decisions by the European Central Bank (ECB) and Bank of England (BOE) are the big items on Europe's economic calendar this week. Both banks will meet on Thursday.
Most economists believe that the ECB will leave its benchmark rate on hold at 0.5%, an historic low. Although no change in policy is expected this week, economists and investors will be watching Mario Draghi's post-meeting press conference closely for signals that a further rate cut, which could occur as early as December, is under consideration.
The ECB wants to keep inflation close to 2% over the medium term. But data released last week showed that the eurozone's annual inflation rate fell to a four-year low of 0.7% in October from 1.1% in September, raising concerns that deflation is a threat in some areas of Europe. As a result, a growing number of analysts are expecting policymakers to reduce rates by 25-basis points over the coming months.
The Bank of England's monetary policy committee (MPC) meeting is more of a non-event. Markets expect policymakers to leave both rates and the size of the bank's £375-billion asset purchase programme unchanged.
The BOE pledged in August to keep its base rate at 0.50% at least until unemployment falls to 7%, which it indicated would not be until late 2016. Given a series of better than expected economic data releases since then, markets now believe that a rate hike is more likely to occur in early 2016.
The Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) will announce its latest rates decision on Tuesday. Markets expect policymakers to leave the central bank's cash rate on hold at a record low 2.5%. The bank's full monetary policy statement will follow on Friday.
Policymakers last reduced the central bank's benchmark cash rate by 25-basis points in August. Although some economists believe that the RBA may eventually cut rates further to stimulate growth, language from the bank's October meeting minutes suggest that a move is highly unlikely this week.
"Members agreed that the bank should neither close off the possibility of reducing rates further not signal an imminent intention to reduce them," the RBA stated.
Elsewhere in the region, Japan – the world's number three economy – will release a preliminary reading of its leading economic indicator on Thursday. Consensus is that the index, which is thought to predict activity over a six- to nine-month period, rose to 109.4 in September after falling to 106.8 in August.
On Friday, China – the world's number two economy – will release last month's trade figures. Analysts expect the numbers to show that exports rose 1.3% from a year earlier, after falling 0.3% in September. Imports likely rose 7.4% – the same rate of growth recorded in the previous month – boosting the country's trade surplus to $23.5-billion from $15.2-billion previously.