Here’s our view on this week’s data releases relating to the U.S. economy.

The most important economic data releases for the week commencing 15 July 2018:

Monday

  • Retail Sales (consensus exp. 0.6%)

Tuesday

  • Industrial Production (consensus exp. 0.5%)

Wednesday

  • Housing Starts (Consensus exp. 1.323M)

Thursday

  • Philadelphia Fed Manufacturing Survey (Consensus exp. 21.5)

Friday

  • OPEC Meeting

This week’s most important release will be Retail sales with an expectation of 0.6% growth.

We would expect a positive outlook as consumer and retail sentiment continues to grow. People expect wages to start growing soon as the labour markets tighten.

As a result, consumer spending has also continued to grow along with consumer credit.

Industrial sentiment remains strong following the recent tax cuts, however businesses are becoming more concerned about a tightening of the labour market with problems finding skilled labour quickly becoming the number one concern.

The recent tariffs on steel and aluminium have caused an acceleration in input prices, if prolonged they will start to cut into corporate profit. Uncertainty around the trade war is causing concern for many businesses which may begin to limit investment.

The OPEC meeting will be of political significance, following president Trump’s concerns over the high price of oil. Fuel prices have been a key component to accelerating input prices for manufacturers. If OPEC agree to increase output (as Saudi Arabia has) then that would relieve some of the inflationary pressure manufacturers are currently experiencing.