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The Week Ahead

Conflicts and Disarmament This Week

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The week begins in Spain with the publication of the public administration debt for August, the data on doubtful loans for this same month, and the hotel survey (occupancy, price index and profitability indicators) for September.

Later in the week, we will also see how GDP sits in Spain with the latest figures being released, and all indicators are that it could be a positive impression, as Spain´s figures are constantly being revised overall with a more positive outlook.

On the roads of Spain, the Guardia Civil will be paying closer attention to working vehicles this week, including vans and truck, as well as buses, and in fact any kind of working vehicle.

October consumer confidence in the eurozone will also be released on Monday. Although it continues at historically low levels, the indicator has chained two months of increases, and, in line with the improvement shown by the ZEW survey, it could register a rebound again although we will need to wait to see the impact of the conflict between Israel and Hamas on the sentiment of European households and companies.

On Tuesday the 24th, investors will focus their attention on the publication of the advance PMIs for the Eurozone. No major variations are expected, both in the services and manufacturing sectors, although the indicator will reflect the initial impact of the conflict between Israel and Hamas on the Eurozone economy.

The week will end with the ECB meeting, which is debating whether to increase interest rates by 25 bp or maintain the price of money at its current level. Likewise, in Spain we will know various macroeconomic references on the labour market and economic activity. The Institute of National Statistics will also publish the latest mortgage statistics this week, along with property transfer data. From a business development point of view, the report due for release on Wednesday detailing the use of information and communications technologies and electronic commerce in companies might be of particular interest.

At the business level, various companies will present their results for Q3 2023. Specifically, large companies such as Puma, Santander, Deutsche Bank, BNP, Volkswagen, and Air France will publish their profits between June and September throughout the week.

Whilst Israel will no doubt dominate headlines around the world, Afghanistan will also return to the limelight as the first witnesses are set to appear before the Independent Enquiry in the UK with a number of high-ranking military officials facing questioning over their knowledge of potential extra-judicial killings. The inquiry is examining the activities of British Special Forces operating in Afghanistan from 2010-2013 amid numerous allegations of extra-judicial killings of civilians in night raids and other operations.

Also in the UK, next weekend, Just Stop Oil has pledged to resume its protests on the streets of London on Sunday. In a letter issued to police unions in September, the group warned they would be back in action if the government refused to negotiate with them on the environment and climate change.

In the UK political field, Wednesday marks a whole year since Rishi Sunak was appointed Prime Minister, and Wednesday of course sees PMQs, so we can expect the anniversary to be marked in the playground commonly called Parliament, whilst Keir Starmer no doubt rides the wave of the two byelection victories last week.

We must also remember that next weekend marks the official end of summer, when we put our clocks BACK, and we can feel a little bit of sympathy, perhaps, for night workers who will have to spend an extra hour at the respective “coal faces”.  

Finally, special days of note this week recognise and raise awareness of subjects such as polio, climate change, print, and black cats, and whilst conflicts are continuing in various parts of the world, it is perhaps important to note that this week is Disarmament Week, a United Nations commemorative event starting on 24 October, the anniversary of the founding of the United Nations, because, as Secretary General of the UN, António Guterres says, “Disarmament must be brought back to the centre of our common efforts for peace and security”.

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