The U.S. provided the most significant catalysts for market direction this week with the release of Q3 2015 Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data as well as the FOMC statement and funds rate announcement. While no change was made to lending rates (by the Federal Reserve), guidance issued was that rates could still be increased at December’s meeting. The market interpreted the guidance as hawkish and in turn the Dollar renewed strength and commodity prices weakened. Thursday’s U.S. Advance GDP data revealed economic growth of 1.5% q/q, significantly lower than the GDP figure of 3.9% q/q realised in Q3, although only slightly below expectations of 1.6% q/q growth.
U.K. Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data fell marginally short of consensus estimates coming in at 0.5% q/q (est. 0.6%).
The annual percentage change in the Producer Price Index (PPI) for final manufactured goods was 3,6% in September 2015. From August 2015 to September 2015 the PPI for final manufactured goods increased by 0,3%.
The private sector credit climbed 8.4% on an annual basis in September, in South Africa, lower than market expectations for a rise of 8.5%. In the prior month, the private sector credit had recorded a rise of 8.6%.
The unemployment rate climbed to 25.5% in 3Q15, compared with market expectations of a rise to 25.1%. In the previous quarter, the unemployment rate had recorded a reading of 25.0%.
The Week Ahead
The new week will begin with the release of Manufacturing PMI data from China, the U.K. and the U.S. to guide financial markets. Tuesday and Wednesday will see testimonies from the ECB President, Mario Draghi and Federal Reserve chairperson, Ms Janet. The week is then set to end with arguably the most watched economic data points out of the U.S., in the form of Non-Farm payroll and Unemployment Rate data.