Fed, U.K. Budget, Israeli Election, Iran: Week Ahead March 16-21

Updated on

(Bloomberg) -- The Federal Open Market Committee will release its policy statement after debating the timing of the first U.S. interest-rate increase since 2006. Fed Chair Janet Yellen will hold a press conference following the meeting.

Housing starts in the world’s biggest economy declined for a second month in February, while industrial production rose, separate reports will probably show.

U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne announces his final budget before the country’s May 7 general election.

Israel holds elections with Isaac Herzog’s Zionist Union leading Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party in the polls.

Companies releasing earnings include Oracle Corp., FedEx Corp., Nike Inc., Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, Enel SpA, Groupe Eurotunnel SE, and Tiffany & Co.

The U.S. National Collegiate Athletic Association men’s basketball tournament gets under way.


-Industrial production in the U.S. probably increased in February as colder weather spurred utility use and factory output continued to expand, according to a Bloomberg survey. The Federal Reserve reports at 09:15 in Washington.

-The U.S. debt limit comes back into effect today after Congress temporarily suspended the cap on government borrowing last year. The Congressional Budget Office said March 6 that incoming revenue along with “extraordinary measures” will help the Treasury Department stay under the ceiling and stave off a default through October or November.

-Iran Nuclear Talks. Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif meets his French, German and U.K. counterparts in Brussels before talks resume in Switzerland on Iran’s nuclear program. Zarif will join U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and diplomats from the world powers for five days of talks as they seek to reach an accord before the end of March. Timings in Brussels and Lausanne, Switzerland, to be determined.

-European Union foreign ministers meet in Brussels, with the situation in Ukraine and sanctions on Russia likely to top the agenda. Starts at 10:00 CET (05:00 EDT).

-German and Chinese government and central-bank officials begin two days of meetings in Berlin following an initiative by Chancellor Angela Merkel and Prime Minister Li Keqiang last year to set up an off-shore renminbi market in Frankfurt. Schedule to be determined.

-Bank of Portugal Governor and European Central Bank Governing Council member Carlos Costa speaks at a seminar hosted by the Portuguese central bank on the new 20 euro ($21) bank note. 14:00 in Lisbon (10:00 EDT).

-ECB President Mario Draghi gives a dinner talk at the SZ Finance Day 2015. 19:45 CET in Frankfurt (14:45 EDT).

-ECB Executive Board member Sabine Lautenschlaeger gives a dinner talk at the Frankfurt Finance Summit 2015. 20:10 CET in Frankfurt (15:10 EDT). Conference takes place tomorrow from 11:00 CET.

-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: U.S. capital flows (Jan.), Empire manufacturing (March), Rightmove U.K. house prices (March), Turkey unemployment (Dec.), Croatia CPI (Feb.), Poland current account (Jan.).



-U.S. housing starts, or the beginning of construction of new homes, probably declined for a second month in February as winter weather impeded activity, according to a Bloomberg survey. The housing recovery has been uneven as home prices and student debt keep some would-be first-time buyers from entering the market. The Commerce Department reports at 08:30 in Washington.

-Israeli Election. Opposition leader Isaac Herzog’s Zionist Union leads Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s Likud party in the polls. The party leader with the best chance of forming a coalition will be tapped by the president to attempt to put a government together. The winner will have to determine policy on issues such as territorial concessions, security and the economy. Polls are open across the country from 07:00 (01:00 EDT) to 22:00.

-The Bank of Japan announces monetary policy following the end of a two-day meeting. Timing to be determined. Governor Haruhiko Kuroda will give a press conference at 15:30 in Tokyo. (02:30 EDT).

-ECB Chief Economist Peter Praet participates in a panel discussion at the Frankfurt Finance Summit 2015. 11:45 CET (06:45 EDT).

-Bundesbank board member Andreas Dombret participates in a panel discussion at the SZ Finance Day 2015. 11:45 CET (06:45 EDT).

-ECB Supervisory Board Chair Daniele Nouy gives the keynote speech at the SZ Finance Day 2015 and participates in a panel discussion. From 13:40 CET (08:40 EDT).

-South Korean President Park Geun Hye will meet with the heads of ruling and opposition parties about her recent trip to the Middle East and efforts to boost economic growth.

-Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung visits Australia. He holds a joint press conference with Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott at 10:25 in Canberra (03/16 19:25 EDT).

-ECONOMY: U.S. building permits (Feb.), Colombia GDP (fourth quarter), Hong Kong unemployment (Feb.), South Africa current-account balance (fourth quarter), Nigeria CPI (Feb.), German ZEW survey (March), euro-area CPI (Feb.), Russia may report industrial production (Feb.).

-CENTRAL BANKS: Turkey rate decision.

-EARNINGS: Oracle Corp., Adobe Systems Inc., Porsche Automobil Holding SE.

-NCAA men’s basketball tournament. First round begins with games today and tomorrow in Dayton, Ohio. The second round starts March 19. Times and teams to be determined. Click here for brackets.


-Fed policy announcement. The Federal Reserve’s policy-setting Federal Open Market Committee meets to assess the economy and debate the timing of the first interest-rate increase since 2006. The announcement and Fed forecasts for economic growth, inflation and interest rates will be released at 14:00. Chair Janet Yellen will hold a press conference at 14:30 in Washington.

-U.S. Congress Internet hearings. All five members of the Federal Communications Commission testify before the Senate Commerce Committee about the agency’s vote last month on new net-neutrality rules governing how Internet service providers manage web traffic. 14:30 in Washington.

-U.K. Chancellor of the Exchequer George Osborne announces his final budget before the May 7 general election in a speech to Parliament. With the vote too close to call, he may introduce new fiscal and spending measures in a bid to persuade voters that five years of austerity under Conservative Prime Minister David Cameron’s government are paying off with an improved economic outlook. 12:30 in London (08:30 EDT).

-The Netherlands holds provincial elections, indirectly choosing a new upper house of parliament. Polls suggest Prime Minister Mark Rutte’s Liberals, his Labor coalition partners and the parties they rely on to pass legislation through the chamber may fail to win a majority. That would force Rutte to seek new allies from among the opposition to ensure he can continue governing. NOS television broadcasts the results of an exit poll when voting ends at 21:00 in The Hague (16:00 EDT).

-The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission holds a public roundtable on Cybersecurity and System Safeguards Testing to review measures to further protect futures exchanges, clearing organizations and swap data repositories. 09:00 in Washington.

-U.S. First Lady Michelle Obama visits Tokyo during a four-day trip to Asia to start the Let Girls Learn international education initiative. She will also visit Cambodia to observe a girls’ education program operated by the U.S. Peace Corps. Through March 22.

-Bundesbank Board member Andreas Dombret speaks at a conference in Frankfurt. 09:15 CET (04:15 EDT).

-ECB Executive Board member Benoit Coeure participates in a panel discussion at the ILF Conference in Frankfurt. Timing to be determined.

-China will announce February property prices after new-home prices in January recorded their biggest ever year-on-year decline. 09:30 in Beijing (03/17 21:30 EDT).

-Russian Economy Minister Alexei Ulyukayev attends a parliamentary hearing on the economy. 10:00 in Moscow (03:00 EDT).

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

-ECONOMY: Chile GDP (fourth quarter), New Zealand current account (fourth quarter), South Korea unemployment (Feb.), Japan trade (Feb.), South Africa consumer-price inflation (Feb.), South Africa retail sales (Jan.), euro-area trade balance (Jan.), euro-area construction (Jan.), U.K. unemployment rate (Jan.), Italian trade balance (Jan.), Russia may report industrial production (Feb.), Poland industrial output (Feb.), Poland retail sales (Feb.), Ukraine industrial production (Feb.).

-CENTRAL BANKS: Bank of England minutes, Bank of Japan flow of funds (fourth quarter), Iceland rate decision.

-EARNINGS: FedEx Corp., General Mills Inc., Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd., Tencent Holdings Ltd., Bayerische Motoren Werke AG, Finmeccanica SpA, Enel SpA, Groupe Eurotunnel SE.


-Swiss National Bank rate decision. The SNB makes its quarterly rate decision, the first since it gave up its cap of 1.20 per euro on the franc on Jan. 15. The SNB will offer new growth and inflation forecasts that take the franc’s January advance into account. 09:30 CET in Zurich (04:30 EDT), with SNB President Thomas Jordan holding a press conference at 10:00 CET.

-Apple Inc., the world’s largest company by market value, becomes part of the Dow Jones Industrial Average, replacing AT&T Inc. The change will be effective at the start of trading at 09:30 in New York.

-The Senate Banking Committee holds a hearing on systemically important financial institutions. 10:00 in Washington. The hearing scheduled for Tuesday, March 17, was canceled.

-Exxon Mobil deal and New Jersey. The state assembly’s Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on the decision by Governor Chris Christie’s administration to settle New Jersey’s $8.9 billion pollution lawsuit with Exxon Mobil Corp. for $225 million. Democratic lawmakers and environmental groups call the settlement inadequate. Christie’s top environmental regulator defends the accord, saying it’s the largest in state history. Time to be announced.

-EU leaders begin a two-day summit with sanctions against Russia, financial support for Greece and energy markets likely to lead the agenda. 16:00 CET in Brussels (11:00 EDT).

-Prince Charles and the Duchess of Cornwall meet with President Barack Obama in the Oval Office. The Prince of Wales and his wife are visiting Washington during trip to promote the U.K.’s partnership with the U.S. in areas such as climate change and encouraging social responsibility on the part of corporations. Times to be determined.

-China and Japan will hold the first security talks between senior foreign and defense ministry officials in four years, in the latest sign of a thaw between the governments. Japan’s Deputy Foreign Minister Shinsuke Sugiyama and China’s Assistant Foreign Minister Liu Jianchao will attend the discussions in Tokyo.

-The Thai Supreme Court’s Criminal Division for Political Office Holders will decide whether to proceed with a case against former Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra alleging corruption in her government’s rice-subsidy program.

-Former Moore Capital Management LLC trader Julian Rifat is sentenced by a London court after pleading guilty to insider trading. Starts at 09:00 (05:00 EDT).

-The U.S. Energy Information Administration releases its weekly natural gas storage report. 10:30 in Washington.

-ECONOMY: U.S. initial jobless claims (weekly), Bloomberg U.S. consumer comfort (weekly), U.S. leading indicators (Feb.), Philadelphia Fed survey (March ), New Zealand GDP (fourth quarter), Swiss government March economic forecast, Swiss trade balance (Feb.), Russia retail sales (Feb.), Russia unemployment rate (Feb.).

-CENTRAL BANKS: Chile rate decision, Norway rate decision, Poland minutes.

-EARNINGS: Lennar Corp., Nike Inc., Li & Fung Ltd., Galaxy Entertainment Group Ltd., China Mobile Ltd., Telecom Italia SpA, HeidelbergCement AG.


-Bank of Japan Governor Haruhiko Kuroda gives a speech and answers questions at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan. 12:35 in Tokyo (03/19 23:35 EDT).

-ECONOMY: Brazil mid-month inflation (March), Argentina GDP (fourth quarter), Taiwan export orders (Feb.), Hong Kong inflation (Feb.), euro-area current account (Jan.), U.K. public finances (Feb.), Ukraine GDP (fourth quarter), Georgia GDP (fourth quarter).

-CENTRAL BANKS: Colombia rate decision.

-EARNINGS: Tiffany & Co., China Resources Enterprise Ltd.

-SOVEREIGN RATING UPDATES: Croatia (Moody’s), Cyprus (Moody’s), Ethiopia (Moody’s), Finland (Fitch), Ghana (Fitch), Hungary (S&P), Nigeria (S&P), Portugal (S&P), Republic of Congo (Fitch), Serbia (Moody’s), Turkey (Fitch).


-NCAA men’s basketball tournament continues. Click here for brackets.

-The Six Nations international rugby tournament concludes with the last round of matches.

To contact the reporters on this story: Greg Miles in New York at +1-212-617-5877 or gmiles1@bloomberg.net; James Amott in London at +44-20-3525-4206 or jamott@bloomberg.net; Keat Kian Koh in Singapore at +65-6212-1580 or kkoh@bloomberg.net To contact the editors responsible for this story: Andy Davidson at +1-212-617-8977 or adavidson@bloomberg.net Nancy Moran, Tal Barak Harif

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