There are a lot of headline capturing economic data releases during the week ahead, but the releases that will capture most of the headlines happen on Friday.
July retail sales missed expectations while consumer confidence has waned recently which has concerned investors that consumer spending may soften. With the current economy dependent on the spending power of the consumer, the July consumer spending release will be widely followed and has the potential to move markets. Additionally, the Federal Reserve’s (Fed) preferred measure of inflation, the Personal Consumption Expenditure price index (PCE), will be updated on Friday. Inflation has been a key driver of market movements recently and the topic of many water cooler discussions, so it will be widely watched as it is a primary data point in the Fed’s decision-making process regarding its tapering of asset purchases.
Speaking of the Fed, the long-anticipated Jackson Hole symposium takes place during the end of the week. Traders will be tuned in to see if the Fed announces its plan to start tapering purchases and any signals regarding its accommodative monetary policies.
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