World Markets

The week ahead: More bloodletting in China stocks?

Look out for these in the week ahead
Look out for these in the week ahead

The region's attention will likely remain squarely on China in the week ahead, as investors continue to grapple with the dizzying roller-coaster rides in the country's equity markets.

A string of economic data from Japan, alongside central bank meetings in South Korea and New Zealand, will also be key risk events.

Meanwhile, Singapore heads to the polls on September 11 for the city-state's most widely-contested election since independence 50 years ago.

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An investor looks through stock infomation at a securities firm in Haikou, capital of south China's Hainan Province.
Xinhua | Zhao Yingquan via Getty Images

Another 'Black Monday' for China?

When China's share markets reopen for trade after a holiday-shortened week, analysts fear more bloodletting in a battered market that has lost nearly 40 percent since its peak in mid-June.

The benchmark Shanghai Composite ended down 0.4 percent last Wednesday, after paring losses by as much as 4 percentage points on the back of fresh supportive measures from domestic brokerage houses. Market watchers noted that Beijing stepped up on intervention measures last week, in a bid to stabilize the country's bruised stock markets before an extravagant military parade commemorating the 70th anniversary of the World War II victory over Japan.

"The government has made it clear that it will not support the stock market anymore. The recent market intervention was focused on removing the stock markets as an issue during the grand political spectacle planned for the WWII commemoration," IG's market analyst Angus Nicholson wrote last Wednesday.

"Once this event passes, there will be no short-term incentive to support markets and we could see the Shanghai Composite testing the low of 2,850 [attained two weeks ago]. This would be a further 10 percent decline in the index and possibly even worse than 'Black Monday'," said the Melbourne-based analyst, referring to the near 9 percent slump in the Shanghai bourse on August 24.

Also in focus this week are trade, M2 growth – a broad measure of money supply – and inflation data for August, which will likely shed light on the state of China's economy.

China messed up the stock market: Expert
China messed up the stock market: Expert

Nippon health check

Due early Tuesday, Japan's revised gross domestic product (GDP) data for the April-June period may exacerbate concerns about global economic growth.

Economists polled by Reuters expect the world's third-largest economy to shrink an annualized 1.8 percent in the second quarter, worse than the initial estimate of a 1.6 percent contraction. This translates into a decline of 0.4 percent on-quarter, unchanged from the government's forecast released on August 17.

However, markets may seek comfort in the core machinery orders scheduled for release on Thursday. A Reuters poll see the leading indicator of capital spending rising 3.7 percent in July, after a 7.9 percent drop in the preceding month.

Read MoreMajor volatility? Buy Japan equities: Goldman's Oppenheimer

Central bank decisions

The Reserve Bank of New Zealand (RBNZ) will likely lower rates for the third consecutive month when it meets on Thursday, bringing the official cash rate down by 25 basis points to 2.75 percent, according to Moody's Analytics.

"The low inflation environment, coupled with the weaker growth outlook, drove the second interest rate reduction [in July]. Even though the lower New Zealand dollar is helping ease monetary conditions, further rate cuts are likely if domestic demand continues to disappoint," analysts said.

On the other hand, the Bank of Korea (BOK) is expected to stand pat on interest rates on Friday, but analysts warn that a cut may be imminent in the fourth quarter amid stalling growth.

"As growth is likely to disappoint, we now expect the BOK to cut rates once again in fourth quarter to bring the policy rate to an unprecedented 1.25 percent. We believe this could take place as early as October," a note by Morgan Stanley said last Tuesday.

Analysts at Morgan Stanley downgraded their 2015 growth forecasts for the fourth-largest economy in Asia to 2.3 percent, from 2.5 percent, after data showed exports slumping by the most in six years in August.

Read MoreSingapore's rulers hope a nudge to the left will keep votersloyal

Singapore votes

For the first time since Singapore gained its independence from Malaysia in 1965, opposition parties will contest all parliamentary seats in a general election held on September 11, mounting their biggest challenge against ruling People's Action Party.

Despite the increased competition, analysts say election fever may remain a sideshow for the local share index, at least for now.

"There are bigger risk events this week such as China. The past two days of trading have been calm largely due to the lack of influence from China, so markets will be on the lookout for that when China markets reopen. But the key risk for September remains the Fed and whether they will raise rates in two weeks' time," Nicholas Teo, market analyst at CMC Markets, told CNBC by phone.

"The polls are important but any impact may only come next week after the results are announced such as in the event of a radical result," the Singapore-based analyst added.

On Friday, the benchmark Straits Times index was the biggest loser in Southeast Asia, down more than 1 percent to finish at its lowest level since August 26.