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The Week Ahead Feb 21, 2022 Thumbnail

The Week Ahead Feb 21, 2022

The Ukraine-Russia conflict has taken over investor sentiment, and world leaders fear a breakdown in diplomatic relations may lead to imminent invasion. U.S. equities are already in a precarious position, with YTD returns at -8% to -14% for the major indexes and sustained volatility (see tweet here). U.S. markets are closed today in observance of President’s Day, but a busy week of data kicks off Tuesday with flash PMIs and consumer confidence. After last week’s strong retail sales numbers, major retailers such as Home Depot, Macy’s, and Lowe’s will report earnings and provide color on how inflation is affecting consumer behavior. On Thursday, the first revision to Q4 GDP is expected to uptick to 7.1% from the initial estimate of 6.9%. More housing data drops with new and pending home sales, leading into the most important release of the week, Friday’s Core PCE Price Index. With CPI and PPI having already come in above expectations, the Fed’s preferred inflation measure is likely to see a similar move higher, adding fuel to speculation of a 50bps rate hike in March. The durable goods report will also be issued Friday. Overseas, UK and Eurozone flash PMIs highlight the calendar, and the Reserve Bank of New Zealand is expected to raise rates for a third time in 5 months.