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2022 is a year of meaningful votes. Some were expected, others not. Some have more legitimacy than others. This week, there will be a lot of analysis on this last point.

The most important of these will be an installation process rather than an election. The Chinese Communist Party begins its five-year congress on Sunday, the most notable element of which will be the handing over of a historic third term to the leadership of President Xi Jinping. The outlook is not good – “a tragic mistake”, according to FT economics editor Martin Wolf.

A pressing concern for Xi’s government is the collapse of the housing market, which together with the zero Covid policy and difficult economic conditions has stalled China’s strong growth, which for the first time since the early 1990s will lag behind the rest of Asia. this year, according to the World Bank. Getting the Chinese consumer to spend more is the obvious way to restore growth. The problem for Xi and his senior lieutenants with this solution is that it would mean giving up some of their political power.

Before all this comes another point of tension for Beijing. Monday is the National Day holiday in Taiwan and the country’s soft-spoken President Tsai Ing-wen will deliver a speech.

China claims Taiwan as its territory. Nicola Sturgeon’s Scottish National Party would no longer like to be seen as the territory of the British government. Sturgeon will make that clear in his party’s closing conference speech on Monday. A day later, the SNP’s risky plan for another referendum on the issue will be heard by the UK Supreme Court.

The British government refused to grant the power to hold another vote. The two-day Supreme Court hearing is due to end on Wednesday.

If the court agrees with the UK government, that would not necessarily be the end of the SNP’s bid for a second referendum, but it would almost certainly undo Sturgeon’s stated aim of holding a vote in October 2023, as it should pass legislation.

London’s iconic Battersea Power Station reopens in a new form as a retail, leisure and residential building © Jason Hawkes

Speaking of second chances, but away from discussing votes, this Friday will see the reopening of London’s Battersea Power Station in a new guise, as a retail, leisure and residential building.

Sounds like good news in troubled times. Expectations are higher than the building’s four chimneys, which you can ascend — for a fee — in a glass elevator. And the £9bn refurbishment, completed after many previous attempts failed, is so cool that Apple is taking a few floors for its UK workforce. Whatever your opinion, the restoration of this iconic 1930s building is energizing the local real estate market.

Economic data

It’s a calmer start to the week for the markets as the US is closed for Columbus Day. However, we will catch up as the week progresses.

Inflation is a theme (will it ever be?), driven by data from the US and China. The Fed will also release the minutes of its September meeting, which will be watched for indications of its future intentions to tighten monetary policy to stifle the rising cost of living.

The annual meetings of the IMF and the World Bank also begin in Washington on Monday and run throughout the week.

Companies

This week will be a mixed bag of results, but a few sectors will figure prominently as the reporting season kicks off.

A buoyant job market should have helped recruitment firms PageGroup and Robert Walters achieve higher net quarterly fees. But their trade updates will be watched for signs of slowing demand as inflation and recession fears grow.

The week will end with a rush for third-quarter results from Wall Street banks, likely to fuel concerns about a US recession. Citi, JPMorgan Chase, Wells Fargo and Morgan Stanley all report Friday – Bank of America and Goldman Sachs will follow next week – and analysts expect these six institutions to collectively set aside more than $4 billion to cover potential losses from bad debts.

Line chart of loan loss provisions in billions of dollars showing U.S. banks beginning to build loan loss provisions

On the bright side, third-quarter revenue from JPMorgan, BofA, Citi and Wells is expected to have risen about 4% year-over-year on higher net interest income following the Fed’s rate hike, our report notes. American banking journalist. Goldman and Morgan Stanley, which derive a larger share of their income from investment banking, are expected to see lower revenue given the drop in trading activity.

Read the full schedule for the week ahead here.