Fed Minutes, Housing Data, Greece, Obama: Week Ahead Feb. 16-21

The Federal Reserve will release minutes of the January meeting of its policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee, at which the central bank boosted its assessment of the world’s biggest economy.

U.S. industrial production increased in January, while housing starts, or beginning home construction, declined in the month, separate reports probably will show.

Japan’s GDP figures are expected to indicate the economy returned to growth in the fourth quarter. Central banks in Japan, South Korea and Indonesia make interest-rate decisions.

Euro-area finance ministers, central bankers and European Commission officials meet in Brussels to discuss Greece’s aid package and its request for a different deal.

U.S. President Barack Obama will deliver keynote remarks at the White House’s summit on extremism.

Companies releasing earnings include Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Credit Agricole SA, Eni SpA, Peugeot SA and Swiss Re AG.

MONDAY, FEB. 16

-Presidents’ Day, a U.S. national holiday. U.S. stock and bond markets are closed.

-Euro-area finance ministers, central bankers and European Commission officials meet in Brussels to discuss Greece’s opposition to the terms of its aid package and its request for a different deal. Timing to be determined.

-Japan GDP data is forecast to show the economy returned to growth in the fourth quarter after a mid-year recession. 08:50 in Tokyo (02/15 18:50 EST).

-North Korea marks the anniversary of its late leader Kim Jong Il’s birthday, a major holiday in the country that developed and tested nuclear bombs under him. Kim was the father of current leader Kim Jong Un, who may use the occasion to renew pledges of loyalty from the military.

-Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s trip through Pakistan, the U.A.E. and Iran comes to an end today. The visit to Pakistan is seen as preparation for President Xi Jinping’s visit in March.

-Hungarian civic groups plan a demonstration on the eve of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s visit to Budapest to protest against closer ties between the countries. Timing to be determined.

-U.S. government bond auctions, Fed debt purchases this week. Click here for schedule.

-U.S. initial public stock offerings this week. Click here for schedule.

-U.S. Supreme Court this week. Click here for schedule.

-ECONOMY: Thailand GDP (fourth quarter), Taiwan GDP (fourth quarter), South Korea household lending (Jan.), Israel GDP (fourth quarter), Ukraine GDP (fourth quarter), Russia may report industrial production (Jan.), U.K. Rightmove house prices (Feb.).

-EARNINGS: Suntory Holdings Ltd., Bankia SA.

TUESDAY, FEB. 17

-Nathan Sheets, the U.S. Treasury Department’s undersecretary for international affairs, speaks about the global economy at the Peterson Institute for International Economics. 08:45 in Washington.

-BP Plc publishes its Energy Outlook 2035 with its forecast for the most likely trajectory for global energy. 15:00 in London (10:00 EST).

-Swiss National Bank President Thomas Jordan speaks at the Universite libre de Bruxelles on "Switzerland at the heart of Europe." 18:15 CET in Brussels (12:15 EST).

-Platts holds its Central & Eastern European Power Conference in Prague, featuring delegates from E.ON SE, RWE AG, CEZ AS, as well as regulators and representatives from exchanges. 09:00 CET in Prague (03:00 EST). Through 02/18.

-Russian President Vladimir Putin visits Budapest for talks with Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban. Timing to be confirmed.

-A Croatian-Russian economic forum is being held in Moscow, with Croatian Economy Minister Ivan Vrdoljak scheduled to speak. Timing to be confirmed.

-Platts 11th Annual Nuclear Energy Conference. Speakers include Stephen Burns, chairman of the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission. Starts 08:45 in Washington. Click here for agenda. Through Feb. 18.

-The Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce holds a conference on Brazil’s economic and political outlook as Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff embarks on her second term amid slow growth, high inflation and a corruption scandal at state-controlled oil company Petrobras. Starts at 08:00 in New York. Click here for the full schedule and speakers.

-China will announce January property prices after new-home prices fell in fewer Chinese cities in December as the government eased property curbs and cut interest rates for the first time since 2012. 09:30 in Beijing (02/16 20:30 EST).

-Bank of Korea rate decision. The key rate is at 2 percent after two cuts last year. The policy statement will be followed by Governor Lee Ju Yeol’s press conference. 10:00 in Seoul (02/16 20:00 EST).

-Ciudadanos, the party challenging Spain’s governing People’s Party, presents its economic policy program. Time in Madrid to be determined.

-ECONOMY: U.S. capital flows (Dec.), Empire manufacturing (Feb), Singapore GDP (fourth quarter), Hong Kong unemployment (Jan.), South Korea PPI data (Jan.), Nigeria CPI (Jan.), Poland employment (Jan.), U.K. inflation (Jan.), ZEW German Investment Confidence (Feb.).

-CENTRAL BANKS: Indonesia rate decision.

-EARNINGS: CapitaLand Ltd., Air Liquide SA, Gas Natural SDG SA, Casino Guichard-Perrachon SA, Orange SA.

WEDNESDAY, FEB. 18

-Fed minutes. The Federal Reserve releases minutes of the January meeting of its policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee. The minutes will provide details on the central bank’s decision to boost its assessment of the economy while reiterating policy makers can be "patient" deciding when to raise interest rates. 14:00 in Washington.

-U.S. industrial production, or output at U.S. factories, mines and utilities, probably increased in January, according to a Bloomberg survey, indicating resilient domestic demand is fueling manufacturing as global markets cool. The Federal Reserve issues the figures at 09:15 in Washington.

-U.S. housing starts, or beginning home construction, probably declined in January, according to a Bloomberg survey, after increasing a month earlier. Building permits also probably rose, indicating homebuilding will sustain gains as borrowing costs remain low and more jobs are created. The Commerce Department reports at 08:30 in Washington.

-The Bank of England publishes the minutes of its Monetary Policy Committee’s February meeting, at which the key interest rate was kept at a record-low 0.5 percent. 09:30 in London (04:30 EST).

-U.S. President Barack Obama delivers keynote remarks at the White House’s summit on extremism, which will focus on domestic and international efforts to prevent extremists and their supporters from recruiting in the U.S. and abroad to carry out violent acts. Representatives from foreign governments, along with federal, state and local officials are scheduled to attend. At the White House today and State Department tomorrow. Participants and times to be announced.

-Illinois Republican Governor Bruce Rauner presents his 2016 fiscal year budget to a joint session of the state’s Democratic-controlled legislature. Illinois, the nation’s lowest-rated state, faces a projected $2 billion shortfall in the 2015 fiscal year ending June 30 and a $9 billion deficit next year. Rauner, the first Republican chief executive elected since 1998, has pledged to cut taxes and spending. 12:00 in Springfield, Illinois (13:00 EST).

-The Bank of Japan will announce monetary policy at the end of a two-day meeting in Tokyo. The meeting usually ends at about midday and is followed by a press conference with Governor Haruhiko Kuroda at 15:30 in Tokyo (01:30 EST).

-Sony Corp. CEO Kazuo Hirai will unveil the company’s medium-term business plan at a media briefing. 15:00 in Tokyo (01:00 EST).

-German Chancellor Angela Merkel speaks at the Ash Wednesday rally of her Christian Democratic Union party in the northeastern town of Demmin, near her electoral district. 18:00 CET (12:00 EST).

-The U.S. Energy Information Administration releases its weekly oil inventory report. 10:30 in Washington.

-ECONOMY: U.S. producer price index (Jan.), South Africa CPI (Jan.), South Africa retail sales (Dec.), Spanish trade balance (Dec.), Russia retail sales (Jan.), Russia unemployment (Jan.), Poland industrial output (Jan.), Poland retail sales (Jan.), Ukraine industrial production (Jan.).

-CENTRAL BANKS: Ghana rate decision.

-EARNINGS: Accor SA, Credit Agricole SA, Eni SpA, Iberdrola SA, Natixis SA, Lafarge SA, Peugeot SA, Carlsberg A/S, Abertis Infraestructuras SA, Deutsche Boerse AG.

-MLB. Spring training gets under way this week as pitchers and catchers report to facilities in Florida and other locations. Click here for schedule.

THURSDAY, FEB. 19

-The ECB publishes an account of its Jan. 22 meeting, at which it decided to start quantitative easing. It’s the first time the central bank has published a record of its monetary-policy meetings under a new plan to increase transparency. Timing to be determined.

-The U.S. Energy Information Administration releases its weekly natural gas storage report. 12:00 in Washington.

-ECONOMY: U.S. initial jobless claims (weekly), Bloomberg U.S. consumer comfort (weekly), Philadelphia Fed survey (Feb. ), U.S. leading indicators (Jan.), Japan trade data (Jan.), Russian weekly gold and foreign-exchange reserves, euro-area consumer confidence (Feb.).

-CENTRAL BANKS: Poland minutes.

-EARNINGS: Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Priceline Group Inc., Nordstrom Inc., Virgin Australia Holdings Ltd., Fairfax Media Ltd., Wesfarmers Ltd., Swiss Re AG, Nestle SA, Aegon NV, Centrica Plc, BAE Systems Plc, Danone, Telecom Italia SpA.

FRIDAY, FEB. 20

-Ex-Virginia governor’s wife sentenced in public-corruption case. Maureen McDonnell was convicted with her husband, Robert, for illegally accepting gifts in return for helping a businessman promote a diet supplement. The former governor was sentenced to two years in prison on Jan. 6. 09:00, federal court, Richmond, Virginia.

-ECONOMY: Canada retail sales (Dec.), Mexico GDP (fourth quarter), Croatia CPI (Jan.).

CENTRAL BANKS: Colombia rate decision.

-EARNINGS: Deere & Co., Standard Life Plc, Bolsas y Mercados Espanoles SA.

-SOVEREIGN RATING UPDATES: Abu Dhabi (S&P), EFSF (S&P), Czech Republic (Moody’s), Denmark (Fitch), Slovakia (Fitch), Spain (Moody’s).

SATURDAY, FEB. 21

-No scheduled events.

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