Thursday preview: MPC decision, Royal Dutch Shell
The focus on Thursday will shift back towards the UK as the Monetary Policy Committee announces its policy decision, alongside the release of its meeting minutes and the August Inflation Report.
In particular, investors will be looking out for a sensitivity analysis from Bank regarding the potential impact that different outcomes for Brexit might have on the economy.
MPC members are also expected to tone down rate hike expectations, although no change in policy settings is expected at this Thursday's meeting.
Acting as a backdrop, financial market participants will also be digesting the outcome of the US Federal Open Market Committee's own rate decision and guidance from the night before.
The possibility also exists that US officials will come out with their own assessment of the face-to-face talks with Chinese trade representatives on Tuesday and Wednesday.
Global manufacturing will also be under scrutiny, with factory sector Purchasing Managers Indices referencing the month of July due out in the UK, US and and Eurozone.
In corporate news, the spotlight is likely to be on Royal Dutch Shell and Barclays as they update shareholders on their second quarter performance.
On Royal Dutch Shell, analysts UBS said the oil major would post second quarter net income of $5.259bn, for a 12% increase versus a year ago but a 1.0% decline when compared to the prior three-month stretch.
Seasonality, a fall in LNG trading, some normalisation of trading, supply returns and weaker chemicals were the factors they expected to drive that drop.
Despite progress year-on-year "2Q was a disappointing quarter with misses in Upstream (tax and weak price differentials) and Oil Products (trading, currency, oil price headwinds)."
Nonetheless, UBS added that: "this result would still leave Shell by some distance the most profitable and cash generative of the oil majors."
The company had previously guided towards a sequential increase in upstream output of 150-200,000 barrels of oil equivalent per day, the Swiss broker said.
For Barclays, Russ Mould, investment director at AJ Bell, said that on a headline basis, analysts will look at two numbers for Barclays: pre-tax profit and the dividend. "In terms of the headline pre-tax profit number, Barclays made £1.7bn on a stated basis in the first half of 2018, while the underlying profit (excluding litigation, conduct costs, restructuring and loan impairments) was £3.7bn. In the second quarter only Barclays made £1.9bn last year, but the figure is a pretty volatile one," he said.
"Barclays paid a 2.5p-a-share interim and a 4p final for a total of 6.5p in 2018. Analysts expect 7.4p for the total this year so they will be looking for a hike in the interim payment."
Thursday August 01
Barclays, British American Tobacco, Coats Group, Convatec Group , Dairy Farm International Holdings Ltd. (Singapore), Eurocell , FBD Holdings, Hongkong Land Holding Ltd. (Sing.Reg), Intertek Group, London Stock Exchange Group, Mandarin Oriental International (Singapore), Merlin Entertainments , Mondi, Rio Tinto, Royal Dutch Shell 'A', RPS Group, RSA Insurance Group, Schroders, Spirent Communications, Standard Chartered, UK Commercial Property Reit Limited, Vivo Energy
INTERIM DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
BBA Aviation 5% Cum Prf, ITE Group, WH Smith
INTERIM EX-DIVIDEND DATE
Blackrock Throgmorton Trust, Globalworth Real Estate Investments Limited, Inchcape, Independent Inv Trust, Maven Income & Growth 3 VCT, Maven Income and Growth VCT 5, Relx plc, Tyman
QUARTERLY PAYMENT DATE
Mercantile Investment Trust (The)
QUARTERLY EX-DIVIDEND DATE
SME Credit Realisation Fund Limited NPV
INTERNATIONAL ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
Auto Sales (US) (20:30)
Continuing Claims (US) (13:30)
Initial Jobless Claims (US) (13:30)
ISM Manufacturing (US) (15:00)
ISM Prices Paid (US) (15:00)
PMI Manufacturing (GER) (08:55)
PMI Manufacturing (EU) (09:00)
PMI Manufacturing (US) (14:45)
Royal Dutch Shell 'A'
7Digital Group , Afritin Mining Limited NPV, Baillie Gifford UK Growth Fund, daVictus
UK ECONOMIC ANNOUNCEMENTS
BoE Interest Rate Decision (12:00)
PMI Manufacturing (09:30)
FINAL DIVIDEND PAYMENT DATE
Next, United Utilities Group
FINAL EX-DIVIDEND DATE
CMC Markets, Fuller Smith & Turner, IG Design Group, Latham (James), Mind Gym, Moneysupermarket.com Group, Monks Inv Trust, QinetiQ Group, Triad Group