Coming off a day that was wildly active in the political world, the focus on Wednesday turns to the FOMC Minutes release. Following this release, all focus will shift to Chairman Jerome Powell’s speech on Friday, which comes following remarks earlier this week from President Trump noting his disdain for rising rates. We are looking for additional insight into how the Fed policy may change given recent economic data, the strength of the dollar, and emerging currency issues.

Coming into this week, expectations had been heavily leaning towards two more rate hikes in 2018. Investors will likely key on any statement from Powell that may change that expectation while political pundits will likely be fast to claim any change is due to Trump’s remarks.

Also due out on Wednesday is the first of three housing data releases this week, with existing home sales due out. In recent weeks, housing data has been falling short of expectations, most recently with July Housing Starts, which came in well below expectations last week at +0.9% month-over-month, compared to an expected +7.4% rise.

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