US-China trade talks dominate the calendar in the coming week, brought into focus with the latest trade figures from both US and China. Fourth quarter GDP for China will also be eyed for any trade war impact. Release of December Sector PMI surveys will provide further nuances into global business activity for key industries.
Other data highlights for Asia include Taiwan's trade numbers and South Korea's unemployment data. Analysts will monitor the first ECB policy meeting in 2019 after the Bank's decision in December to end its bond-buying programme. Elsewhere, GDP data for the UK and US trade statistics will be keenly watched.
Our special focus this week looks at the impact of the new Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CPTPP), which came into force on 30th December 2018.
Download the article for a full diary of key economic releases.
Contact for further APAC commentary: Rajiv Biswas or Bernard Aw
The overall performance of eurozone private sector workersdeteriorated to the greatest extent in 67 months at the end of2018. Faster rates of contraction in productivity were evidentamong service providers and goods producers, with the latter onceagain leading the downturn. Nationally, Germany recorded thequickest drop, followed by France. In Italy, a sustained increasein output per head in the service economy was insufficient tooffset efficiency losses in the manufacturing industry.
At 49.0 in December, the seasonally adjusted EurozoneProductivity PMI® -derived from IHS Markit's national manufacturing and services PMIsurvey data - pointed to a moderate decline in output per head inthe currency union. Falling from 49.5 mid-quarter, the latestfigure highlighted the quickest rate of deterioration in overfive-and-a-half years.
Accelerated falls in output per head were registered in both themanufacturing and service sectors. In the former, the reduction wasthe sharpest in six-and-a-half years. Although only slight incomparison, the contraction at service providers was the quickestsince May 2013.
Italy's service sector was the only one to post efficiency gainsduring December. The rise was the seventh in as many months, albeitmarginal. At the same time, Italian goods producers noted a quickerworsening of labour market performance as sustained job creationcoincided with ongoing declines in factory production. Hence,aggregate productivity decreased fractionally after growth had beenrecorded in November.
Germany remained the key source of efficiency losses, noting aquicker drop than France and Italy. The contraction gathered pace,reaching the fastest seen since August 2012. A marginal decline wasregistered in the service sector, one that was broadly similar tothat recorded halfway through the final quarter. By comparison,German manufacturers posted the steepest deterioration since March2009.