EM FX is starting the week off on a firm note as “risk on” prevails in the wake of the first round French presidential election. We see no reason to stand in the way of this EM bounce, as the combination of receding global political risk and soft US data are likely to encourage a continued appetite for risk.
Singapore reports March CPI Monday, which is expected to remain steady at 0.7% y/y. The MAS does not have an explicit inflation target. However, it left policy steady at its policy meeting this month and left its language unchanged. Singapore then reports March IP Wednesday, which is expected to rise 5.6% y/y vs. 12.6% in February.
Taiwan reports March IP Monday, which is expected to rise 6.1% y/y vs. 10.6% in February. Growth is recovering, and strong export orders suggest further improvement in H2. Taiwan then reports Q1 GDP Friday, which is expected to grow 2.5% y/y vs. 2.9% in Q4.
Mexico reports mid-April CPI Monday, which is expected to rise 5.59% y/y vs. 5.02% in mid-March. Even though inflation is still rising, we think the firm peso will allow Banxico to stay on hold May 18. If the Fed hikes June 14, then Banxico should follow it with another 25 bp hike to 6.75% on June 22. Mexico reports March trade Thursday. Q1 GDP will be reported Friday, which is expected to grow 2.5% y/y vs. 2.4% in Q4.
Hungary’s central bank meets Tuesday and is expected to keep policy steady. It eased further via unconventional measures at its March meeting and so no further action is likely until the June meeting. If inflation continues to rise, we believe further easing is unlikely.
Brazil reports March current account and FDI data Tuesday. It reports central government budget data Thursday, followed by consolidated budget data Friday. The sluggish economy has hurt revenue collection, but lower interest rates should help limit interest payments.
Turkey’s central bank meets Wednesday and is expected to keep rates steady. Half the analysts polled by Bloomberg look for a hike in the Late Liquidity Window rate, but we think the firmer lira gives the bank leeway to remain on hold near-term. The bank releases its quarterly inflation report Friday, which should give further insight to the bank’s outlook for rates. Turkey also reports March trade Friday.
Korea reports Q1 GDP Thursday, which is expected to grow 2.6% y/y vs. 2.4% in Q4. It then reports March IP Friday, which is expected to rise 4.0% y/y vs. 6.6% in February. Given the downside risks to the economy from political risk (both internal and external), we think BOK is on hold for now even though inflation is rising. Next policy meeting is May 25, no action is seen then.
Israel reports February manufacturing production and March trade Thursday. The economy is robust, even as price pressures are picking up. We see no further stimulus measures, though we expect the central bank to continue intervening to prevent excessive ILS strength.
South Africa reports March money and private sector credit, trade, and budget data Friday. The economy remains soft, but above target inflation is preventing the SARB from cutting rates. If disinflation continues, a rate cut is possible in H2 but much depends on the rand and the external environment. Next policy meeting is May 25, no action seen then.
Central Bank of Russia meets Friday and is expected to cut rates 25 bp to 9.5%. A small handful of analysts look for steady rates, but we think lower than expected inflation of 4.3% y/y in March will allow the bank to cut 25 bp again.
Poland reports April CPI Friday, which is expected to rise 2.1% y/y vs. 2.0% in March. Some members of the MPC are starting to push back against the dovish forward guidance of no hikes until 2018. We believe the first hike is likely to come in H2 of this year. Next policy meeting is May 17, no action is seen then.