Singapore kicks off its earnings season with third-quarter numbers from Singapore Press Holdings (SGX: T39). In April, the publisher of The Straits Times said net profit fell by around a quarter compared to a year earlier. But the media conglomerate said it continues to make progress with its digital transformation. It also said that it is seeing improved recurring revenue from its property segment.
On the economic front, the latest US inflation numbers should make for some interesting reading. In May core inflation came in at 2%, which was slightly below market expectations. But it is probably still high enough to make the US Fed think twice about cutting interest rates.
China’s June balance of trade could be like waving a red rag in front of an American bull. While exports could be lower, imports could have fallen more, which could mean that China’s trade surplus could have increased from $41.6 billion to $45 billion.
But India’s balance of trade should please the US. In May, India’s trade deficit, which was driven by record imports, widened to US$15.6 billion. Unfortunately, the surge in imports was driven by purchases of gold rather than industrial goods.
The health of the Indonesian household will be on show next week. In April, retail sales increased by 6.7% year on year. It was the weakest growth since November last year. Weakness was seen in clothing and tobacco. But there was strength in motor vehicles and household equipment.
Malaysia will also report retail sales. In May, they grew 6.3% compared to a year ago, which was slightly slower than in the previous month. Elsewhere, Bank Negara will announce its latest interest-rate decision. The central bank is expected to keep its benchmark rate on hold at 3%.
And finally, Singapore will provide a first look at its economic growth rate for the second quarter. The economy could have expanded 1.1% between April and June.
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