The Week Ahead

It's a busy week for the Reserve Bank, with Glenn Stevens and Philip Lowe set to hit the speaking circuit, while investors keenly await a dividend payout from BHP Billiton.

Local newsflow will focus on the Reserve Bank of Australia this week, with the Governor and Deputy Governor set to give speeches in Hong Kong and Sydney respectively. The central bank will also release its financial stability review.

Other key speeches during the week will be delivered by the federal opposition leader and Coca-Cola Amatil’s managing director. Many investors can also look forward to BHP Billiton’s dividend payments this week.

Offshore, United States fourth-quarter GDP data is expected, along with an update on the Chinese manufacturing sector.

RBA

It’s a busy week for the Reserve Bank of Australia, with Governor Glenn Stevens set to speak at a Hong Kong conference and the Deputy Governor also scheduled to address two Sydney forums.

On Tuesday, RBA Deputy Governor Philip Lowe will speak at the ASIC Annual Forum in Sydney.

On Wednesday, Lowe will offer introductory comments to the Centre for International Finance and Regulation conference in Sydney.

Stevens will address the Credit Suisse Asian Investment conference in Hong Kong and will also participate in a panel discussion.

The central bank will publish its biannual financial stability review on the same day.

On Friday, the RBA will disclose its financial aggregates data.

Local news

The Australian Bureau of Statistics takes a breather in the last week of this month.

On Thursday, the CBA/HIA housing affordability survey for the fourth quarter will be released.

Corporate

Although some earnings reports are expected this week, many investors may be more keenly expecting BHP Billiton’s dividend payments on Wednesday.

On Tuesday, first-half results from Funtastic and TPG Telecom are expected.

On Wednesday, Nufarm’s first-half results are due.

BHP Billiton, Woodside Petroleum and Ramsay Health Care also have their dates payable.

Overseas

Global investors will be watching United States fourth-quarter GDP data this week, as well as the latest update on the health of the Chinese manufacturing sector.

On Monday, in China, the HSBC/Markit flash manufacturing purchasing managers’ index for March is due, with Bloomberg tipping a slight lift to 48.7.

On Tuesday, the Conference Board China leading economic index for February is due.

In the United Kingdom, the February retail price index will print.

In the United States, Markit preliminary PMI for March will be disclosed.

On Wednesday, February new home sales data is tipped to show a slight fall to 440,000.

The January house price index and the March consumer confidence index are due out.

In the United Kingdom, fourth-quarter GDP data will be disclosed.

On Thursday, in China, February industrial profits will print.

In the United States, February durable goods orders are forecast to show a flat result.

On Friday, in China, the February leading index is expected.

In Japan, February CPI data will be revealed.

In the United States, fourth quarter GDP data is tipped to rise to 2.7 per cent.

The Bloomberg consumer comfort survey and initial jobless claims figures will be unveiled.

February pending home sales are forecast to show no change.

Late Friday, February personal income and personal spending data are both expected to lift by 0.3 per cent.

Wrapping up

Key speakers this week include the federal opposition leader and Coca-Cola Amatil managing director.

On Tuesday, in Melbourne, a Trans-Tasman Business Cicrle panel will feature Telstra chief information security officer Mike Burgess and NAB chief security officer David Powell.

On Wednesday, in Canberra, Opposition Leader Bill Shorten will address the National Press Club.

In Sydney, Bega Cheese executive chairman Barry Irvin will speak at a lunch hosted by the Committee for Economic Development of Australia.

On Thursday, in Sydney, Echo Entertainment Group’s remuneration committee chair Anne Brennan will speak at an Australian Institute of Company Directors briefing.

In Canberra, shadow assistant treasurer Andrew Leigh will speak at the National Press Club.

In Melbourne, Sensis managing director John Allan will speak at an American Chamber of Commerce in Australia lunch.

On Friday, in Western Australia, Coca-Cola Amatil managing director Terry Davis will speak at the AICD Rottnest Island Forum.