It's only No-flipping-vember already. How did that come around so fast? October finished with a fantastic Rugby World Cup final and I think even Aussie fans would accept that it was won fair and square by New Zealand. I loved the video of Sonny Bill Williams giving his medal to a 14 year kid who ran on to the pitch at the end. I am a bit worried about what message that sends out to all the other fans but it is a measure of the man. I also loved the online comment that the Wallabies might have won if they'd had that steward in their back line but that's just facetious isn't it.
Last week saw the Pound gather strength, the US Dollar dance in the middle of its ranges and huge amounts of speculation over the future path of interest rates in various countries. We will see more of the same this week.
The five days ahead bring an interest rate decision from the Reserve Bank of Australia from which no change is expected. However, there is some pressure on the RBA to cut their base rate in order to keep the AUD weak and to offset some of the impact of a slowing Chinese economy as well as falling commodity income. The Australian Dollar remains weak ahead of tomorrow's announcement and the RBA's monetary policy statement on Friday.
The US Federal Reserve will also be in action but more as a talking shop. We will get speeches from all manner of Fed chairpeople (if there is such a word) but they may all be overshadowed by the purchasing managers indices and Friday's employment report all of which are expected to be very mixed.
The Bank of England makes its interest rate and Quantitative Easing budget decisions on Thursday but no change is likely. Traders will though be looking for any hints of the timing of a UK rate hike and there has been a great deal of speculation from within and without the BOE as to when that might happen. I suspect nothing is going to change for a good 6 months but we shall see.
The European Central Bank will publish its economic bulletin on Thursday but that too may be overshadowed by industrial production data and PMI indices from the Eurozone and its member states. The Euro remains weak as the ECB ponders boosting the money supply and/or cutting their deposit rate.
The unemployment data from New Zealand and Canada may cause some volatility as both sets of data are expected to be slightly worse than last time. The Bank of Canada is unlikely to react but the Reserve Bank of New Zealand is already contemplating interest rate cuts and that would weaken the NZ Dollar.
And workers in the East End of London may have wondered about the unusual weather vane atop the roof nearby on Friday but it wasn't a weather vane, it was art. In fact it was Poppy Jackson, who sat astride one roof peak (or should that be Peek) totally starkers in the name of art. I have no idea who this Art is but he gets people to do some very strange things in his name.
Wrapping up warm
After putting on three pairs of socks, six jumpers, six pairs of trousers, five woolly hats, four scarves, thin gloves and thick mittens, two thick coats and a pair of boots, I waddled outside.
Ten seconds later I was lying face down in the snow and I couldn't move.
That Primark security guard clearly knew a thing or two about rugby tackles.