By WSJ Staff
In the week ahead, the U.S. will see fresh data on housing starts and existing-home sales, and the Federal Reserve will release its policy statement. Overseas, the Bank of England issues a policy decision.
Tuesday: The U.S. Commerce Department releases housing-starts data for May. The gauge of home building across the U.S. increased in April, driven by an uptick in single-family construction. Permits for single-family homes declined though, suggesting that the gain in starts might have been temporary. A host of factors, including a lack of available land and rising input costs have driven up prices, causing a slowdown in the broader U.S. housing market. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal expect housing starts increased by 0.4% in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.24 million.
Wednesday: Fed officials signaled earlier this month they were ready to discuss rate cuts but were unlikely to pull the trigger at their June 18-19 meeting. Fed Chairman Jerome Powell has said the Fed will "act as appropriate" to extend the expansion amid greater uncertainty from unsettled trade negotiations. One question is how far officials might signal any bias toward easier policy in their postmeeting statement.
Thursday: Faced with continued uncertainty about when and in what way the U.K. will leave the European Union, the Bank of England is expected to leave its key interest rate unchanged at 0.75%. However, policy makers are expected to remind skeptical investors that they intend to raise the key interest rate over the coming years. Investors expect the next move to be a rate cut, partly because they expect global economic growth to weaken, and partly because they fear the damage a disruptive Brexit could inflict on the economy. Later in the day, Gov. Mark Carney will have an opportunity to reinforce the BOE's message in his annual Mansion House speech, which sees him address investors directly at the Lord Mayor of London's official residence.
Friday: The National Association of Realtors releases May existing-home sales data for the U.S. Sales of previously owned U.S. homes declined for the second month in a row in April, suggesting continued weakness in the housing market. Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal forecast existing-home sales rose by 0.6% in May to a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.22 million.
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
June 16, 2019 15:14 ET (19:14 GMT)
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