Asia looks to China PMIs, Australia GDP this week

What you need to know in Asia
What you need to know in Asia   

Economic data is back on the radar in Asia at the start of December after plunging oil prices dominated headlines for much of last week.

China's monthly purchasing manager's indices (PMI) and Australia's third-quarter gross domestic product (GDP) will take the spotlight.

That time again: China PMIs

The week began with separate readings of China's November factory activity from the government and HSBC. China's official Purchasing Managers' Index (PMI) eased more sharply than expected, official data showed Monday. Meanwhile, HSBC's final PMI reading was unchanged from the flash figure, which clocked in at the breakeven level of 50.0 that separates expansion from contraction

The closely-watched reports come on the heels of the central bank's surprise interest rate cut late last month, which indicated that policymakers are worried about the country's economic slowdown despite publicly quashing stimulus hopes in previous months.

Read MoreChina 'wasted' $6.8T in investment: Researchers

Wednesday will see the release of PMIs for China's service sector, an increasingly important industry for investors as the government attempts to boost domestic spending. In 2013, services accounted for 46 percent of GDP. In October, the official non-manufacturing index slipped to 53.8 from 54 in September, a nine-month low, while HSBC's index hit a three-month low.

All eyes on Australia

Growth data for the world's twelfth-largest economy is expected on Wednesday. According to Moody's Analytics, the economy may grow 0.4 percent on quarter and 2.7 percent on year during the July-September period. Those figures would be slower than the 0.5 percent quarterly rise and 3.1 percent annual increase seen in the May-June period.

Read MoreWhy RBA's move tocool housing could backfire

Saeed KHAN | AFP| Getty Images

"Retail volumes have recovered, suggesting household consumption made a stronger contribution to GDP growth than in the previous quarter. Business investment likely dragged on growth as mining investment is gradually wound back," said economists at Moody's Analytics in a report.

Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy and chief economist at AMP, expects a slightly better performance. He forecast a rise of 0.7 percent on-quarter and 3.1 percent on year, underpinned by solid contributions from consumer spending and trade.

Read MoreNot so merry Xmas in store for Aussie retailers

October retail sales and trade data are also on tap this week. Analysts widely expect the country's trade deficit to narrow from September's A$2.3 billion deficit and retail sales to cool after surging an unexpected 1.2 percent in September.

Meanwhile, the Reserve Bank of Australia holds its monetary policy review with no change anticipated.

"We still see the RBA's next move as more likely to be up than down, although we expect it to remain on hold until at least mid-2015. We still have a rate hike penciled in for June 2015, but the clear risk is that it hold steady for longer," HSBC said in a note.

Read MoreAustralia's record-low rates to head further south

Elsewhere in the region

South Korea's final GDP estimate for the July-September quarter on Thursday is likely be to be little changed from the earlier estimate, experts say. In October, the Bank of Korea announced the economy grew by a seasonally adjusted 0.9 percent on quarter, compared with a 0.5 percent rise in the May-June period.