A week of Independence Days

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Hello and welcome to the working week.

Or maybe I should welcome you to Independence Week. The big one – the celebration of 1776 and all that – kicks off Monday in the United States. But from Algeria to Venezuela, from Argentina to South Sudan, the disconnection of former colonial powers is a strong theme – and a source of public holidays around the world – for the next seven days.

For those of us trying to get down to work (or keep doing it), however, this won’t be a week of celebrations.

French railway workers will go on strike on Wednesday, days before the start of the country’s school holidays.

Then there’s the unfolding drama of the summer of British discontent. Lawyers in England and Wales will resume their ‘crime doesn’t pay defenders’ strike tomorrow. On Tuesday they will be joined by banking regulators from the Financial Conduct Authority – represented by Unite – who are stepping down (again) in defiance of their latest wage offer. Moreover, the range of workers taking action is widening. Also on Tuesday, washing machine makers Whirlpool will be voted to take strike action against what union bosses have called an “insulting” wage offer.

Seems a good point to mention that the Financial Times is conducting a survey on cost of living compression – how do you cope with higher prices? To participate, click here.

After last week’s NATO summit in Madrid, Western efforts to help Ukraine this week will turn to Lugano in Switzerland. The Ukraine Recovery Conference is the latest in a series of high-level political gatherings first held in London in 2017, originally to discuss reforms that could open up foreign investment at a time of relative peace for the nation. The invasion of Russia gave new urgency to such support.

Is there anything to lighten the mood? Well, the summer season has begun – and by that I mean the FT Live summer season of thought-provoking talks and gatherings. This Thursday’s event, Capitalizing on Disruption to Create Business Opportunities, is free and you can do so by clicking here. In the longer term, you can save a place (and money) at the FT Weekend Festival, which takes place in London on September 3. Enter promotional code FTWFxNewsletters for a £10 ticket discount at ft.com/ftwf.

Thank you (again) for your feedback on The Week Ahead. Email me at [email protected]

Economic data

The key question at the moment is whether, or in some cases, when major Western economies will tip into recession. A series of business surveys this week will highlight areas of concern for business owners. Also closely watched will be Wednesday’s minutes of the Federal Reserve’s latest rate-setting meeting and Friday’s US labor market report.


We’re in for another week of retail-dominated UK business news. The commercial update of J Sainsbury’s Tuesday will indeed be a replay of Tesco a few weeks ago as it too made a strategic decision to accept lower prices which will cut into profits in order to keep customers.

curries could be quite interesting given that the UK electricals retailer is the undisputed market leader, but its market capitalization has shrunk, margins are tight and it feels like the pandemic was the high point of the business .

Main economic and corporate reports

Here’s a more comprehensive list of what to expect in terms of corporate reports and economic data this week.


  • Canada, Bank of Canada Business Outlook Survey

  • EU, May data on industrial producer prices

  • Germany, trade balance figures for May


  • Australia, Reserve Bank of Australia monthly rate-setting meeting

  • China, France, Germany, Italy, UK, US: Caixin/IHS Markit/S&P Services Sector Global Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) Data

  • EU, eurozone S&P Global Composite (industrials and services) PMI data

  • United Kingdom, official holdings of international reserves plus trade figures

  • United States, May Factory Orders

  • Results: Sainsbury’s Q1 Trading Statement


  • EU, May retail sales figures

  • EU, France, Germany, UK: Cips/IHS Markit/S&P Global construction PMI data plus US services PMI data and Eurozone productivity PMI data

  • Germany, May factory orders data

  • United States, the Federal Open Market Committee publishes the minutes of its June meeting

  • Results: Redde North Gate AF


  • EU, the European Central Bank publishes its quarterly financial statements

  • France, trade balance data for May

  • Germany, industrial production figures for May

  • Poland, National Bank of Poland base rate setting meeting

  • Russia, June CPI data

  • UK first quarter productivity figures plus Halifax monthly house price index

  • United States, ADP employment report

  • Results: curries AF, Jet2 AF, Khaki Q1 Commercial Update, RS Group Q1 Trade Update


  • Canada, June unemployment data

  • China, June Consumer Price Index (CPI) and Producer Price Index (PPI) figures

  • Italy, industrial production figures for May

  • Japan, May trade balance data

  • UK, KPMG/REC Monthly Employment Report and First Quarter Banking Sector Regulatory Capital Figures

  • United States, unemployment figures in June

  • Results: OMV Q2 Trade Update

Global Events

Finally, here’s a look at some of the other events and milestones from this week.



  • Algeria, Independence Day celebrations

  • Anniversary of the 1946 invention of the bikini by French automotive engineer and clothing designer Louis Réard, who named his garment after the site used by the United States for atomic testing

  • Venezuela, independence day celebrations


  • In the EU, speed-limiting technology is set to become mandatory for all new vehicles sold under agreed rules in 2019. The UK has said it will align with these vehicle standards.

  • France, railway workers go on strike to challenge wages

  • Spain, the Running of the Bulls festival begins in Pamplona


  • Italy, start of the trial in Genoa in the court case concerning the collapse of the Morandi motorway bridge in 2018

  • UK, deadline for a government decision on whether to go ahead with a new coal mine in Cumbria. Also, the annual Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod begins in North East Wales.


  • UK Hinkley Point B nuclear power station set to begin closure despite fears of blackouts later this year


  • Argentina, Independence Day celebrations

  • Eid al-Adha, one of the most important holidays in the Muslim calendar, begins

  • South Sudan, Independence Day celebrations

  • United Kingdom, Wimbledon Women’s Tennis Championship Final


  • Bahamas, national day commemorating independence from the United Kingdom in 1973

  • Ireland, national holiday marking 101 years since the signing of a truce ending the Irish War of Independence

  • Japan, election of representatives of the upper house

  • Republic of the Congo, parliamentary and municipal elections

  • UK Wimbledon Men’s Tennis Championship Final

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