Let the games begin. No, not the bitter dispute between the last two candidates in the Conservative Party leadership election – although you can watch that on the BBC on Monday. The Commonwealth Games begin this week in Britain’s second largest city, Birmingham.
The opening day of the international sports festival is overshadowed by another major event of the British summer of 2022: industrial action. The RMT will hold the latest in a series of strikes over wage levels for rail industry workers on Wednesday, the same day that Aslef – representing train drivers – counts the votes in its strike vote on members’ pay. The unrest continues to spread, with telecom engineers and dockers either striking or voting for industrial action over pay.
Across the Channel, energy ministers from EU member states will meet in Brussels this week to agree on measures to end Europe’s dependence on Russian fuel supplies. According to Europa Express newsletter author Valentina Pop, the prospects are not good. On Sunday, President Vladimir Putin will have the opportunity to address Naval Fleet Day in port cities across Russia.
If that’s too depressing, then perhaps it’s worth celebrating the prospect of yet another substantial compensation for Britain’s postmasters who have suffered as a result of the faulty Horizon computer system. Former Supreme Court Justice Lord John Dyson is expected to announce a final settlement for victims of the IT scandal after the Government announced an interim payment totaling £19.5million in June.
The highlight of this week’s election news is Tunisia’s vote on a new constitution. Politicians and analysts say there is little doubt the charter, drafted by populist leader Kais Saied, will be adopted even as they expect a low turnout.
All eyes will be on Washington on Wednesday for the Federal Reserve’s latest interest rate announcement. The monetary policy machinery is expected to tighten with an increase of 75 basis points. At least one senior Fed governor wants the Federal Open Market Committee to go further.
Then we get the growth data – did someone mention the recession – with quarterly GDP numbers for the US, Canada, France, Germany and the bulk of the Eurozone countries.
We’ve hit peak season with company names from A to Z (or at least X) — ironic considering Alphabet made Tuesday’s list.
The negative impact of the strong dollar was seen on a number of US earnings calls this quarter. It’s expected to resurface as a problem with a string of earnings announcements from Silicon Valley tech companies, which have some of the highest percentages of overseas revenue.
Microsoft, reporting on Tuesday, has already lowered its dollar-based guidance, and Morgan Stanley issued a note last week that the dollar could lead to a disappointing guidance from Apple when it releases its numbers on Thursday.
Attention will also be focused on the consumer goods industry, with Unilever, Danone, Procter & Gamble, Reckitt Benckiser, Nestlé and Mondelēz all reporting this week. Analysts fear shoppers will tighten their belts and favor cheap supermarket own-brand products over multinational brands. The decision by Unilever and others to increase their prices hasn’t made the situation any easier.
Read the full calendar for next week here.