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The Week Ahead: India Election Result and Japan GDP

With the quarterly earnings season over for another three months, traders will have to look elsewhere in a holiday-shortened week to get their excitement.

In the first three months of 2019, around half the companies that make up the Straits Times Index (SGX: ^STI) reported higher quarterly earnings. Some of the best performers included the three Singapore banks, namely, DBS Group (SGX: D05), OCBC (SGX: O39) and UOB (SGX: U11).

Other notable performers included CapitaLand Commercial Trust (SGX: C61U), Thai Beverage (SGX: Y92) and Genting Singapore (SGX: G13).

On the economic front, the minutes of the US Fed’s May interest-rate meeting could provide some interesting reading. Earlier this month, the US Federal Reserve left the federal fund rate unchanged at 2.25%. It said economic activity has been rising at a solid rate and that the labour market remains strong. But it did say it would be patient about further policy firming.

Japan will provide the first look at its economic expansion in the first three months of 2019. It is expected to show that the economy grew 0.2% in the first quarter, while the inflation rate could have moderated to 0.3%. Meanwhile, the balance of trade for May could have dropped from ¥529 billion in April to ¥272 billion.

India will announce its general election result on Thursday. According to exit polls, the world’s largest democracy is expected to return incumbent prime minister to power. However, pollsters are not infallible. Australian prime minister, Scott Morrison, stunned the country and the pollsters by leading his Liberal-led coalition to victory.

Thailand is expected to say that its economy grew at an annualised rate of 3.7% in the first quarter, which would be unchanged from the final quarter of 2018. In the final three months of last year, economic growth was driven by private consumption and private sector investment.

And finally, Singapore is expected to confirm that its economy grew an annualised rate of 1.3% in the first three months of 2019. This would be slowest growth rate since the fourth quarter of 2015.

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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 has a recommendation for DBS Group, OCBC, UOB and CapitaLand Commercial Trust. Motley Fool Singapore Director David Kuo owns shares in DBS, OCBC, UOB and CCT.