Next Week’s News Today: All Eyes On The Banks Again

Market watchers could be poring over US economic numbers after Janet Yellen’s spoke at Harvard University on Saturday.

The Fed Chair said that a rate hike would probably be coming in the summer – the operative word being “probably”. Technically, summer is between May and August. There are only two meetings scheduled in the summer. So the rate rise could either be June or July.

Janet is slated to speak again the following Tuesday. So, she could change “probably” to “possibly”, after taking a closer look at the data this week. These include Personal Spending in April and Total Vehicle Sales in May.

But one of the key numbers that the Fed could likely focus on next week could be Non-Farm Payroll for May. In April, the Payroll increased by 160,000, which was lower than analysts expectations. They got it totally wrong. They were hoping for 202,000.

China will report numbers on its Manufacturing and Non-Manufacturing activities in May. There are signs that Manufacturing is showing signs of stabilising, after the government took fright at the rapid decline in activity. Meanwhile, Non-Manufacturing activity continues to hold up well, with expansion in evidence.

Japan continues to capture the attention of the markets, as the debate over the effectiveness of Abenomics continues apace. Of some interest could be Retail Sales, which could be an important driver of economic growth. Last month, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said they decreased by 1.1% over the period a year ago.

Singapore will report Bank Lending figures for April. Last month, the Monetary Authority of Singapore said lending fell in March. Some of the disappointing sectors include general commerce, transport, storage and communication. The Bank Lending figures, which are out on Tuesday, could have an impact of DBS Group (SGX: D05), OCBC (SGX: O39) and UOB (SGX: U11).

And don’t forget, the Great Singapore Sale (GSS) kicks off on 3 June. During the GSS the ticket prices on some items could be cut by as much as 70%. Bargains could be found just about anywhere in Singapore. So don’t just stick to your favourite neighbourhood mall. Venture further afield to see what else is available.

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