It was an extremely quiet start to the week yesterday, with no major economic data releases in the UK or America. In the eurozone, we did see construction output for September which came in much better than expected and was some much-needed positivity for the economy.
Today is another relatively quiet day, although on Wednesday we will see the European Commission’s decision on Italy which could cause some euro volatility. Last week, the Italian government defied a request to present a revised draft budget for 2019, with Luigi Di Maio, the deputy prime minister and leader of the anti-establishment Five Star Movement, saying the Italian government would maintain its deficit target of 2.4%. It will be interesting to see what happens tomorrow.
Trade war fears reared their head again yesterday, after the US and China clashed at a major summit over the weekend. The US vice-president, Mike Pence, challenged Beijing’s trade practices at the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) in Papua New Guinea. He went on to criticise China for engaging in forced technology transfer and intellectual property theft. China’s president, Xi Jinping, responded by criticising Washington’s aggressive stance on trade. Tellingly, APEC leaders failed to sign off the traditional end-of-summit communique, suggesting that cooperation is not at the forefront of attendees’ minds.
In the UK, we will see CBI industrial trends orders for November, while in the US we will see October’s building permits. We could yet see more political fireworks, especially given that the Democratic Unionist party forced its MPs to vote with Labour against the finance bill. The move is seen as a warning shot to Theresa May, where Sammy Wilson, the DUP’s Brexit spokesman said the government has broken its Brexit promise.
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