Week ahead: City’s gaze turns to fresh inflation figures

Week ahead: City’s gaze turns to fresh inflation figures

Most economists expect inflation to firm even further, jumping to 5.5 per cent in January from 5.4 per cent in December

All eyes in the City this week will be on fresh inflation figures as investors brace for another shocker of a print.

Most economists expect inflation to firm even further, jumping to 5.5 per cent in January from 5.4 per cent in December.

That would still leave the cost of living at around a 30-year high. The Office for National Statistics will release new data on prices on Wednesday.

Further closely watched economic figures are released this week, with fresh jobs data out on Tuesday.

Although payrolled employee numbers are forecasted to continue to recover, eagle eyed traders will be combing through the new wage figures for any signs of pay pressures intensifying.

There is growing concern rising pay has the potential to trigger a mild wage/price spiral which could result in inflation staying around for much longer.

Analysts at Deutsche Bank “expect the number of payrolled employees to push up by 135,000”.

New retail sales and consumer confidence estimates are out on Friday.

On the corporate side, UK banks’ earnings season kicks off on Thursday with Asia-focused bank Standard Chartered updating the City, followed by state-owned lender NatWest on Friday.

Analysts expect the sector’s fourth quarter earnings to come in hot, driven by a higher interest rate environment and an improving economic backdrop lifting British banks’ bottom lines. Shareholders are expected to receive some goodies from the bumper profit print. 

Miner Rio Tinto releases final year results on Wednesday, while FTSE 250 listed trading platform Plus500 reports on Tuesday.

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