Australia in focus
The week ahead is crucial for Australian traders with a monetary policy decision from the Reserve Bank of Australia (RBA) and a raft of economic data on tap, including September retail sales, foreign trade and employment.
On Tuesday, the RBA is widely expected to leave interest rates on hold at 2.5 percent for the 16th consecutive month.
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"Nothing much has changed since the October meeting and benign inflation in the September quarter, sub-par growth and the still high Australian dollar support the case for rates to remain low," said Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy at AMP Capital.
The central bank is due to release its statement on monetary policy on Friday, which is expected to signal that rates will remain on hold well into next year.
"While 16 months on hold sounds like a long time it's still short of the 20-month record that was set between December 1994 and July 1996, but it's likely this record will be breached as a rate hike looks unlikely until around mid-next year,' Oliver said.
Trade data on Tuesday is likely to be weak, with Moody's Analytics expecting the deficit to widen to A$1.13 billion after $790 million in August. Meanwhile, the firm sees retail sales growing 0.4 percent on month, from 0.1 percent in August.
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