In the wake of the sharp upside surprises in German and Spanish CPI figures released the day before, the risks to the consensus forecasts point clearly to an overshoot.
Economists are expecting an acceleration in the annual rate of French CPI from 4.2% in February to 4.8% for March and in the case of Italy from 6.2% to 7.1%.
Stateside meanwhile, the most relevant piece of data is expected to be a reading on the personal consumption expenditures’ price deflator for February.
Consensus is also expecting a rise in the year-on-year rate of inflation in this case, from 6.1% for January to 6.4% in February and from 5.2% to 5.5% at the core level.
On the positive side of things, Ian Shepherdson, chief economist at Pantheon Macroeconomics, was expecting the latter would mark the peak with a clear downshift anticipated during the second quarter.
As an aside, Shepherdson was also anticipating that the non-farm payrolls report for March due out on Friday would reveal zero jobs growth, instead of the approximately 475,000 jump in payrolls that many of his peers had penciled-in.
Nevertheless, the big picture continued to be one of a labour market that was healing and in which the bar for firms to lay off staff – given the “huge” number of vacancies ‘ was still very high.
Back on home shores, at 0700 GMT, mortgage lender Nationwide was scheduled to release its house price index for March (consensus: 13.5% year-on-year).
Thursday 31 March
Aptamer Group, Gattaca, James Halstead
INTERIM DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
Base Resources Ltd , Fonix Mobile , Gateley (Holdings) , Genus, Springfield Properties , Triple Point VCT 2011 ‘B’
INTERIM EX-DIVIDEND DATE
The European Smaller Companies Trust
QUARTERLY PAYMENT DATE
Aberdeen Diversified Income and Growth Trust , Downing Renewables & Infrastructure Trust, HICL Infrastructure , NextEnergy Solar Fund Limited Red, Premier Miton Global Renewables Trust, Raven Property Group Limited Cum Red Pref, The Renewables Infrastructure Group Limited
QUARTERLY EX-DIVIDEND DATE
BlackRock Sustainable American Income Trust, Contour Global , Mercantile Investment Trust (The), Primary Health Properties, Value and Indexed Property Income Trust
INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
Chicago PMI (US) (14:45)
Continuing Claims (US) (13:30)
Initial Jobless Claims (US) (13:30)
Personal Consumption Expenditures (US) (13:30)
Personal Income (US) (12:30)
Personal Spending (US) (13:30)
Unemployment Rate (GER) (08:55)
BBGI Global Infrastructure S.A. NPV (DI), Elecosoft Public Limited Company, Hostelworld Group , Reach, RTW Venture Fund Limited NPV, S4 Capital
AIB Group (CDI), Convatec Group , Fidelity European Trust, Globaldata, Hammerson, InterContinental Hotels Group, Maven Income and Growth VCT 5, Moneysupermarket.com Group, Phoenix Group Holdings , Quartix Technologies, Smith & Nephew, Taylor Wimpey, Travis Perkins, Wynnstay Group