In the spectre of concern over global macro risk factors, U.S. stock markets sold off sharply yesterday to touch the lowest price levels in more than a year. In the week ahead, more data points out of China and the U.S., as well as corporate earnings reports, will help to lend more insight into the causes behind the recent bout of market volatility. If those data releases werent enough, the worlds greatest financial minds will convene in Davos, Switzerland for the annual World Economic Forum to help suss out the macroeconomic situation.
Monday, January 18: Chinas National Bureau of Statistics releases residential housing price data for 70 cities. In October the housing price index crossed into positive territory for the first time since 2014 as intervention in capital markets by the Peoples Bank of China helped to prop up real estate values. Analysts anticipate further gains upon the release on Monday, though whether or not PBOC policymakers can also instill renewed confidence in Chinese stock markets remains an open question.
Tuesday, January 19: Bank of America Corp. and Morgan Stanley release earnings for the final three months of 2015. So far, earnings releases in the cycle have been better than anticipated for major banks. Goldman Sachs Group, which announced a tentative $5.1 billion settlement with regulators over mortgage-backed securities trading practices last week, announces quarterly results this coming Friday.
Wednesday, January 20: The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics releases December consumer inflation data. Expectations are for prices at the cash register to remain muted. Producer price data released this past week contracted on a month-over-month basis, as depressed fuel costs kept costs low.
Thursday, January 21: The luminati of the cinema world will convene in the ski resort town of Park City, Utah for the 38th Sundance Film Festival. Founded in 1978 as the Utah/U.S. Film Festival in a bid to bring filmmakers to the Beehive State, the event has since become the largest independent film festival in the U.S. Movie buffs looking for different place to relax can check out the Ice Lounge at the Waldorf Astoria-Park City, a special venue created to celebrate the debut of Ice Imperial, Moët & Chandons newest champagne.
Friday, January 22: Speaking of celebrity-filled, multiday events in mountain resorts, the annual World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland offers policymakers, corporate leaders and financial-sector movers and shakers to see and be seen. The highlight of the event may be German Chancellor Angela Merkels comments, which are likely to focus on her view of European Central Bank efforts to combat deflation, as well as the refugee crisis.
Saturday, January 23: Carnevale di Venezia, a festival tracing its roots to 1162, is a celebration of Venice and its unique culture. A city-wide masquerade ball featuring costumes ranging from depictions of black and white harlequins to creatures fantastic or grotesque, some scholars believe that the iconic masks were intended to remove social class barriers during the annual festival. Essentially a series of individual, opulent private parties spilling out into the streets, the festival has been a feature of popular western culture featured in cinema and literature, including classic novel The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas.