On Monday, Rosstat is to publish its statistical report for July, which includes data on the labour market, retail sales and investment activity. Accelerated inflation is likely to lead to real wages growth slowing down, while seasonality is to add to the unemployment rate. Retail sales growth will likely remain close to June’s level, while the investment data might bring a positive surprise as the preliminary import data for July showed the import of investment goods accelerating. This report is likely to play a key role in determining the CBR's next step in terms of monetary policy (the decision is to be taken during the first half of September): strong data would give regulator the more confidence to hike base rates 25bp in September. Among other important things to watch this week:
Weekly CPI release on Wednesday, which we expect to take one more step forward and reach 5.9% YoY (just a fraction below the CBR’s end-year forecast).
Russia becomes the WTO's 156th member on 22 August.