On Friday, regional currencies experienced rather a calm session. The forint posted some minor losses, whereas the zloty and the koruna slightly strengthened. As for data on retail sales for July released in Poland, it came out in line with market expectations (+6.9% Y/Y) and therefore confirmed a significant deceleration in comparison with the beginning of this year.
The following week will be much more interesting from the perspective of both regional and global events than the previous one. The eye-catcher is Bernanke’s speech in Jackson Hole which might provide hints on Fed’s further steps (QE3). Apart from that, the meeting of the National Bank of Hungary (MNB) is scheduled for Tuesday and Polish statistical office will release GDP growth estimates for the second quarter on Thursday.
Regarding the former, we expect the MNB will leave rates unchanged at about 70% probability. On the one hand, recent appreciation of the forint and deeper recession speak in favour of the cut; on the other hand, uncertainty related to the IMF talks will probably convince the board to keep official rates at current level. As regards the latter, we expect Polish economy’s growth decelerated to 3% Y/Y in the second quarter.
Today, market will focus on the release of Germany’s Ifo index. We believe that the risks for the IFO remain on the downside which poses some risk for CE currencies as well. However the room for prospective losses is rather limited due to ongoing bets on QE3.