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He is a bold commentator trying to predict the conclusion of the diplomatic chess game that is the border crisis between Ukraine and Russia. But the next seven days will produce significant moves, if not a checkmate attempt.
Perhaps the strangest event of the week will take place on Thursday, when Russia, as the current head of the UN Security Council, is to chair a discussion at the body’s global headquarters in New York on the Ukrainian crisis.
But before that, the new German Chancellor Olaf Scholz travels to Moscow and Kiev to try to ease the tension. He follows in the footsteps of Emmanuel Macron in France and British Prime Minister Boris Johnson – and the stakes are high for all European economies – but Scholz’s meetings have special significance given Germany’s need for a new Ostpolitik, or Eastern politics, as Timothy Garton Ash explained. in his FT opinion piece this week.
On Wednesday, attention will turn to NATO, where defense chiefs from member countries are meeting in Brussels.
He then returns to Germany on Friday as the Munich Security Conference begins. Speakers include Kamala Harris, US Vice President. She should use her trip to meet with American allies and partners to deter Russian aggression. It will therefore be a test of his diplomatic skills.
The 2022 story, inflation, will be back with another episode this week as India, China, Japan, the US, UK and Canada all report data in some form. or another – consumer price index or producer price index. Employment data is also expected from the UK and EU. Elsewhere, Japan updates us on its quarterly GDP and the Fed and Reserve Bank of Australia release their policy meeting minutes.
Food is a theme for corporate earnings this week, with analysts calling out the heavyweights in retail on either side of the Atlantic – Carrefour and Walmart – as well as consumer goods companies.
Investors in the former will look for signs of progress in chief executive Alexandre Bompard’s turnaround strategy. Expectations are higher for Walmart, the world’s largest brick-and-mortar retailer, which has already raised its forecast for the full-year results it will report on Thursday. However, both companies are under pressure from global forces of collapsing supply chain and rising inflation.
Nestlé has been one of the market’s favorite consumer goods companies under chief executive Mark Schneider. It shifted its portfolio to fast-growing areas such as plant-based foods, meal kits and pet foods. But its 2021 figures, due Thursday, will reflect a tough comparison with a year earlier, when coronavirus lockdowns boosted sales of items such as coffee. Investors will also take a look at how the world’s biggest food company expects to cope with runaway cost inflation that has squeezed margins at rivals.
Read the full schedule for the coming week