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China trade, inflation data, plus four central bank meetings in focus this week

Mick Ryan | Cultura RM Exclusive | Getty Images

Investors will be on data-watch in the first week of June, searching for clues on China's economy and awaiting central bank decisions from Australia, India, South Korea and New Zealand.

Health check for the Chinese economy

China May trade data are due on Wednesday, and Deutsche Bank's Taimur Baig said in a note that China's trade surplus was likely to widen to $60 billion in May from $45.6 billion in April.

"Import costs are falling as high global commodity supply keeps prices low, even though volumes of iron ore, crude oil, copper and other commodities are growing. Exports are still lower in year-on-year terms, but there are signs of recovery," said economists at Moody's Analytics in a weekly note.

On Thursday, China will release consumer price data for May. Consumer prices have nudged higher in recent months due to an increase in food prices, while there are also indications that non-food inflation is on the rise, Moody's Analytics said.

China's May producer price index (PPI), an index of prices measures at the producer level, will be released on the same day, and is likely to show shift away from deflation due to the rebound in commodity prices.

Beijing will also be releasing its May industrial production, fixed asset investment and retail sales on Sunday.

Four central bank decisions due

Central banks in the Asia Pacific region meeting next week will most likely be keeping interest rates on hold and wait for the Fed's June meeting before making their next move.

The Reserve Bank of Australia will convene on Tuesday, when it is largely expected to keep interest rates on hold at an all-time low of 1.75 percent, after a surprise rate cut at its May meeting.

"Solid real economic growth and the RBA's desire for 'further information' after cutting in May is likely to see the RBA wait till August before cutting rates again," said Shane Oliver, head of investment strategy and chief economist at AMP Capital, in a weekly note.

Australia's economy has been expanding faster than expected, with its gross domestic product growing 1.1 percent quarter-on-quarter from January to March, compared to Reuters' median forecast of 0.8 percent.

Also on Tuesday, the Reserve Bank of India will meet to decide if its monetary policy is appropriate, but is unlikely to make changes to the repo rate which is at 6.5 percent, said Moody's Analytics, adding that that the central bank is still likely to favor lowering rates further.

South Korea's central bank is due for a monetary policy meeting on Thursday.

The Bank of Korea will also likely keep rates on hold at 1.5 percent because the "Korean government and central bank are working together to recapitalize banks along with restructuring Korea's unprofitable, highly leveraged export-oriented sectors, such as shipping and shipbuilding,"

Lastly, policymakers at the Reverse Bank of New Zealand will meet on Thursday.

In May, Reuters had reported that the RBNZ was "increasingly concerned" about the overheated property market and would seriously consider macro-prudential tools to curb lending.

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