Australia is set to take the spotlight in a data-heavy week in Asia Pacific, with its central bank set to meet while companies in the country begin reporting their earnings.
The Reserve Bank of Australia is widely expected to cut interest rates during its August policy meeting on Tuesday to support the economy, after the latest round of data showed headline prices Down Under remained well below the central bank's inflation target.
"We maintain our view that the RBA will ease in August, not only to support inflation but also to improve future growth prospects in light of a weak labor market," said Bank of America Merrill Lynch economists Alexandra Veroude and Tony Morriss in a note on Thursday.
In the June quarter, the consumer price index increased 0.4 percent after a quarterly decline of 0.2 percent in March. On-year, the inflation rate decelerated to 1 percent, compared to the 1.3 percent rise in the twelve months to the March quarter of 2016.
"Headline CPI is at the lowest annual rate since March 1998 and core inflation is now the weakest rate in the history of the series," said Veroude and Morriss.
Goldman Sachs analysts also expect the RBA to ease interest rates at its August meeting. However, the analysts pointed out one data point that could offer the case against a near-term rate cut - the 0.5 percent on-quarter increase in the trimmed mean measure of inflation, taking the annual rate to 1.7 percent on-year.