Next Week’s News Today: Fasten Your Seatbelts

If you are someone of a nervous disposition, then you might want to avoid the financial channels next week

On Wednesday the US Federal Open Market Committee – better known as the Fed – will conclude its two-day meeting on interest rates. It will announce its decision as to whether the cost of borrowing in the US will be going up.

It could come as a huge surprise to everyone if it does because Janet Yellen has already hinted that interest rates are likely to remain unchanged, at least until June. But you can never say never. Anything could still happen, so fasten your seatbelts.

Interest-rate decisions are also on the agenda in Japan and Indonesia. Japan is expected to maintain interest rates at 0%, especially since its economy is growing less quickly than expected. Meanwhile eyes could be on Indonesia, which surprisingly cut its interest rate by 0.25% last month.

Elsewhere, the price of newly built houses in China could be watched with interest. Over the last five months, cooling measures have taken its toll on the price of new properties. In January, they fell 5.1%, with big falls seen in both Beijing and Shanghai.

China will also report Foreign Direct Investments (FDI) numbers next week. There was a time when the US was the top destination for FDI. But all that changed in January, when it reported a 29% surge in foreign investments to US$13.9b. Nearly two-thirds of the money went into the services industry, as the country continues to rebalance its economy away from exports to consumer spending.

And finally don’t be too alarmed should shares in Jardines Matheson (SGX: J36) and Jardine Strategic (SGX: J37) fall next week. It could even lop off a few points from the Straits Times Index (SGX: ^STI).

Shares in the Hong Kong “hong” will be trading without the entitlement to dividends. The same goes for Dairy Farm Holdings (SGX: D01), Hongkong Land (SGX: H78) and Mandarin Oriental (SGX: M04).

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The information provided is for general information purposes only and is not intended to be personalised investment or financial advice. Motley Fool Singapore Director David Kuo doesn’t own shares in any companies mentioned.