February 14, 2011

Budget Cuts and Bernanke Speaks: Advisor Briefing for the Week of Feb. 14, 2011

This week’s market moving news may not have the drama of the Eqyptian revolution, but there’s plenty going on that will affect advisors and their clients. In Washington, the big news this week will be release of President Obama’s FY2012 budget (while the House debates funding the government for the rest of FY2011). Fed Chairman Bernanke testifies before Congress, the Fed releases the minutes of the late January FOMC meeting, and there are congressional hearings on Dodd-Frank, while economic reports are released on inflation and growth.

Monday, Feb. 14, is not only Valentine’s Day, but also Budget Day, as the Administration distributes its FY2012 budget. Republicans in the House meanwhile are looking at cuts to the budget for FY2011, which ends Sept. 30. Economic reports include retail sales (up 0.5% from December 2010 and a whopping 7.9% above December 2009) and import prices for January. 

On Tuesday, Feb. 15, the House Budget Committee holds a hearing on the FY2012 budget with Jacob Lew of OMB; Lew repeats his act in the Senate Finance Committee in the afternoon. The House Ways and Means Committee weighs in on the budget with Treasury Secretary Geithner testifying. The House Financial Services Committee holds hearings on implementation of Dodd-Frank, with testimony from the SEC’s Mary Schapiro and CFTC’s Gary Gensler. Barclays releases its earnings and the National Association of Home Builders/Wells Fargo releases its Housing Market Index for January.

Wednesday, Feb. 16, brings reports on the Producer Price Index, housing starts and industrial production for January. The Fed releases the minutes of its January FOMC meeting, and the House Ways and Means Committee holds a hearing with OMB’s Lew on the Obama FY2012 budget. The final report from the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission is scheduled to be released to the House Financial Services Committee. The House Budget Committee gets a visit from Treasury Secretary Geithner to discuss the department’s 2012 budget. Scheduled to report earnings are Morningstar and ING.

Thursday, Feb. 17, brings reports on weekly jobless claims and the Consumer Price Index and leading economic indicators, both for January. Fed Chairman Bernanke is scheduled to testify before the Senate Banking Committee on implementation of Dodd-Frank, along with Schapiro and Gensler, Sheila Bair of the FDIC and the acting Comptroller of the Currency.

The business week ends (before the Feb. 21 Presidents’ Day holiday, when markets are closed) with the G-20 finance ministers holding the first of two days of meetings in Paris.

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