The Week Ahead

Major domestic data including unemployment figures and confidence indicators are due, while offshore the US budget statement and key Chinese economic data are of note.

There are still a few key data releases on the economic calendar prior to Christmas.

At home, all eyes will be on Thursday’s unemployment numbers, while surveys of consumer and business confidence will also provide key insights.

Offshore, investors will be focused on the US monthly budget statement as well as Chinese inflation and industrial production figures.

Westpac Banking Corporation will hold its annual general meeting, while New South Wales Treasurer Mike Baird and Infrastructure Australia Chairman Sir Rod Eddington are set to give speeches.

RBA

The Reserve Bank of Australia takes a breather this week, with no major releases or speeches expected.

Local news

At home, investors will be watching indicators on consumer and business confidence as well as unemployment data.

On Monday, ANZ Bank releases its job ads for November.

Tuesday sees the Australian Bureau of Statistics release October housing finance data, with economists tipping a 1 per cent lift in the number of loans.

The National Australia Bank’s November survey of business confidence and conditions is also due.

On Wednesday, the December Westpac-Melbourne Institute consumer confidence index will print, with economists expecting little change.

Thursday we’ll see the unemployment rate from the ABS, which Bloomberg expects to lift slightly to 5.8 per cent.

On Friday, ABS also releases lending finance data.

Corporate

It’s set to be a quiet week in corporate news, although investors will be watching Westpac’s annual general meeting.

Thursday is date payable for Macquarie Group, which is also due to hold an extraordinary general meeting.

On Friday, Westpac Banking Corporation will hold its annual general meeting, while it’s date payable for Orica and the date of record for New Zealand Banking Group.

Offshore

Investors will be watching inflation, industrial production and retail sales data from China this week, as well as the United States’ monthly budget statement, retail sales and producer price index.

On Sunday China unveils its trade balance, with the surplus tipped to fall to $US23.7 billion ($25.41 billion).

China’s inflation figures are due Monday.

On Tuesday, China’s November industrial production data will print, along with November retail sales.

On Thursday we’ll see the US monthly budget statement.

Friday brings US retail sales for November, with economists tipping a 0.4 per cent lift excluding autos, while the Bloomberg consumer comfort survey is also due.

Late Friday the US producer price index for November will be unveiled, with economists expecting a 0.1 per cent lift in the core rate.

Wrapping up

Speeches from the New South Wales treasurer and Infrastructure Australia chairman will be of interest this week.

On Tuesday, United States Federal Reserve St Louis president James Bullard and Dallas Fed president Richard Fisher will give speeches.

In Melbourne, Infrastructure Australia chairman Sir Rod Eddington will speak at a Committee for Economic Development of Australia forum.

In Canberra, National Party federal director Scott Mitchell will address the National Press Club.

On Wednesday, in Canberra, Australian Broadcasting Corporation Chairman James Spigelman will speak at the National Press Club.

On Thursday, in Sydney, NSW Treasurer Mike Baird will address a CEDA breakfast.

In Perth on Friday, Aegis Media’s executive chairman Harold Mitchell will speak at an Australian Institute of Company Directors lunch.

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