Deadlines for politicians and Nato’s 75th anniversary


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Hello and welcome to the working week.

Deadlines and anniversaries are the themes of this week and Thursday is a big day. Donald Trump must post the (recently reduced) $175mn bond in his civil fraud case in New York. The former US president gained a paper fortune last week when Trump Media & Technology Group, the company behind his Truth Social platform, made its market debut, but he is highly unlikely to be able to access these funds.

In the UK, veterans’ minister Johnny Mercer must explain to a public inquiry by Wednesday why he cannot comply with an order to hand over the names of people who told him about an alleged cover-up in Afghanistan by British special forces. Failure to do so could result in a prison sentence.

Then Nato celebrates its 75th anniversary in Brussels as the military alliance looks for a new head to replace Jens Stoltenberg and members face pressure to increase their financial support amid Russian aggression in Ukraine. A day earlier, on Wednesday, Norway’s Crown Prince Haakon will begin a two-day visit to Lithuania where he will meet Norwegian troops serving in Nato’s battlegroup stationed in Rukla.

The beginning of April means changes to UK government support and regulations, notably a cut to the energy watchdog’s price cap, and an increase in the minimum wage from £10.42 to £11.44 an hour, the biggest annual rise, on the 25th anniversary of the scheme’s introduction.

It is a quiet week for corporate news now that earnings season is all but over. US employment figures are the highlight in a thin run of economic developments. There will be a smattering of election news with parliamentary polls in Kuwait on Thursday, then a run-off vote in Slovakia’s presidential election and local polls in Poland to finish the next seven days.

One more thing . . . 

Since it’s still Easter Day when this newsletter is posted, I hope you are enjoying some quality time with those you love this weekend and perhaps a chocolate egg before the price rises further.

I’m now taking some time off, including an anniversary trip to the Suffolk coast. Thank you for those who sent in suggestions of what to do — the intention is to enjoy long walks, ending up in a dog-friendly pub for our puppy. My colleague David Hindley will be holding the fort, and keeping you ahead of the agenda, while I am away.

What are your priorities for the next seven days? Would you like to see more, or indeed less, of something in this newsletter? Email me at jonathan.moules@ft.com or, if you are reading this in your inbox, hit reply.

Key economic and company reports

Here is a more complete list of what to expect in terms of company reports and economic data this week.

Monday

  • France, Germany, Italy, UK: Easter Monday holiday. Financial markets closed

  • Germany: monthly import prices data

  • US: monthly construction spending figures plus final S&P Global manufacturing purchasing managers’ index (PMI) data

Tuesday

  • EU, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK: final S&P Global manufacturing PMI data

  • UK: British Retail Consortium Shop Price index and Nationwide March House Price index

  • US: monthly factory orders data

  • Results: Paychex Q3

Wednesday

  • EU: April flash consumer price index (CPI) inflation rate figures and unemployment rate

  • Italy: April unemployment rate

  • US: S&P Global final services PMI data

  • Results: Hilton Food Group FY, Topps Tiles HY trading statement

Thursday

  • EU, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, UK: S&P Global final services PMI data

  • UK: March international reserves data

  • US: monthly trade balance and unemployment figures

  • Results: Co-operative Group FY, Conagra Brands Q3, Lamb Weston Holdings Q3

Friday

  • Germany: monthly factory orders data

  • UK: April Halifax House Price index and S&P Global construction PMI data

  • US: monthly unemployment rate

World events

Finally, here is a rundown of other events and milestones this week.

Monday

  • April Fool’s Day. Beware

  • UK: phased rollout of free childcare to children below the age of three, announced by chancellor Jeremy Hunt in his Spring Budget statement in March 2023. Also, Ofgem’s updated energy price cap, decreasing charges from £1,928 to £1,690 per year for a typical household, and a higher minimum wage come into effect.

Tuesday

Wednesday

  • US: nomination period closes for the selection of the next managing director of the IMF. Incumbent Kristalina Georgieva, whose current tenure ends in September, has said she is interested in another five-year term.

  • Veterans’ minister Johnny Mercer must explain to a public inquiry if he cannot comply with an order to hand over the names of people who told him about an alleged cover-up in Afghanistan by British special forces

Thursday

  • Belgium: 75th anniversary celebrations for Nato. Secretary-general Jens Stoltenberg to give a press conference at an event in Brussels

  • Kuwait: parliamentary elections

  • US: British billionaire Joe Lewis, whose family own Tottenham Hotspur football club, is due to be sentenced after pleading guilty to insider trading in January

  • US: deadline for former president Donald Trump to post a $175mn bond in his civil fraud case to prevent the New York attorney-general seizing assets

Friday

Saturday

  • Slovakia: second round of the presidential election

  • UK: Start of the new tax year. Capital gains tax higher rate for property is cut from 28 per cent to 24 per cent, as announced by chancellor Jeremy Hunt in his Spring Budget last month

Sunday

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