President Barack Obama's State of the Union address on Tuesday night will get much of the media attention this week. And the speech does carry some political importance for a president struggling to recover from a disastrous 2013 and push his approval rating back above 50 percent.
But from an economic perspective, the speech bears little significance. Obama will push for an extension of jobless benefits, a hike in the minimum wage and for big employers not to discriminate against the long term unemployed. He also still wants a comprehensive immigration bill.
But Republicans are likely to block much of Obama's agenda. And even if he got a boost in the minimum wage and an unemployment insurance extension, it would not make a large-scale macroeconomic difference. And Obama's pledge to move unilaterally through executive order, which has enraged some Republicans fearful of onerous new EPA regulations, may not amount to much either.
In fact, Obama has been pledging to act unilaterally on jobs initiatives since 2011 to little apparent affect.
(Read more: Obama's risk of going too left in State of the Union)
The far more important event in Washington from an economic perspective takes place Wednesday when the Federal Reserve's Open Markets Committee releases its latest statement on monetary policy, the last with Ben Bernanke as chairman.