The Week Ahead: May 14-20, 2012

May 13, 2012 11:01 PM
 
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via a special arrangement with Informa Economics, Inc.

Ex-Im bill | Small business tax bill | Farm bill hearings


NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.


Senate debate on an Ex-Im authorization bill and possible debate on a small business tax bill, House consideration of a Defense Dept. authorization measure, and two more House Agriculture subcommittee farm bill hearings are the focus of Congress this week. The House is not in session today, but will return May 15. At the conclusion of the week's business, the House is scheduled to take another one-week recess from May 21-25; Members will return May 30.

The Senate will try again to bring the Export-Import Bank authorization bill (HR 2072) to the floor. The bank is the official US export credit agency. Its current charter expires May 31. The House May 9 passed its measure on a bipartisan vote of 330-93.

The Senate will also likely consider a small business tax break bill (S 2237). The measure would provide a temporary 100 percent depreciation credit for small businesses and offer a 10 percent tax credit for small firms that increase their payrolls through either new hires or wage increases during 2012. The maximum credit per employer would be capped at $500,000. The goal of the depreciation credit on qualified capital expenditures, valid only for 2012, is to encourage businesses to make new investments. Businesses can only deduct 50 percent for the year under current law. There is no plan yet to offset the estimated $26 billion cost of the bill.

The House Agriculture Committee on Thursday will mark up several pieces of legislation to reform federal regulations regarding swap data. One measure (HR 4235) would repeal certain requirements for regulatory authorities to obtain access to swap data. A second bill (HR 1838) would prohibit federal bailouts of swap dealers (HR 1838). The committee also will mark up a bill (HR 3283) which would provide regulatory exemptions to certain swaps.

The House Agriculture Committee will have two more farm bill hearings this week. The Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management will examine commodity programs and crop insurance during two days of hearings Wednesday and Thursday. The House Agriculture Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy, and Forestry meets Friday to examine the energy and forestry programs in the farm bill.

As for possible Senate floor action on a new farm bill, nothing has been scheduled to date.

Financial markets are watching for more fallout from the JPMorganChase situation, with lawmaker pressure likely to mount in the days ahead, especially if more developments emerge. Europe and the situation in Greece in particular will remain of great interest to markets since the matter ended in flux relative to whether or not new elections may be coming. Economic reports of note include Consumer Price Index and Retail Sales data on Tuesday, Industrial Production data on Wednesday and weekly Jobless Claims on Thursday. Also in the coming week, traders will comb through the minutes Wednesday from the April Federal Open Market Committee meeting for any signs of additional steps to help the US economy are any closer to reality, or are at least being considered by the Federal Reserve.

For agriculture, the focus will shift back to planting progress for corn and soybeans, along with development readings via today’s Crop Progress report. The Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook report comes out Wednesday, with Weekly Export Sales on Thursday and the monthly Cattle on Feed report to close out the week.


This week's Washington-related agenda: The agenda for congressional committees features hearings on financial market access in China, and the new farm bill.

Monday, May 14
Europe:
Spain and Italy auction bonds.
Euro zone finance ministers meet, with the situation in Greece on the agenda.
EU farm policy: Agriculture ministers meet in Brussels for two days of discussion on reforming the EU common fisheries and agricultural policies.
European crisis debated: The European Economic Congress opens in Katowice, Poland, where leaders from politics, business and science debate how Europe can respond to the debt crisis and economic slowdown (until May 16).
Iran: The UN's nuclear watchdog resumes talks with Iran on its nuclear program.
Economic reports: Selected Interest Rates (Federal Reserve).
USDA reports: Export inspections (AMS) | Crop Progress (NASS) | Feed Outlook (ERS) Wheat Outlook (ERS) Aquaculture Data (ERS).

Tuesday, May 15
France inaugurates François Hollande, as president; he heads to Germany to speak with Chancellor Angela Merkel.
EU finance ministers meet in Brussels, with the union’s proposed 2013 budget and regulation of credit rating agencies on the agenda.
Fiscal summit: Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner attends a fiscal summit in Washington.
US-Colombia FTA begins: A trade agreement between the US and Colombia, the third-largest economy in South America, comes into effect.
Primaries: Primary elections in the Republican party contest for a presidential candidate take place in Nebraska and Oregon.
Energy reports: Weekly National Petroleum Report (API).
Economic reports: ICSC-Goldman Sachs Store Sales | | Retail Sales | Treasury International Capital Report | Empire State Mfg Survey | Business Inventories | Housing Market Index | Consumer Price Index.
USDA reports: Meat Price Spreads (ERS) | Turkey Hatchery (NASS) | Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook (ERS).

Wednesday, May 16
Farm Bill - Commodity programs and crop insurance:
Subcommittee hearing. House Agriculture — Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management. Continued on May 17.
Fiscal 2013 appropriations: 302 (b) allocations: Committee markup. House Appropriations Committee.
Trade policy: Committee hearing. House Small Business Committee hearing titled "U.S. Trade Strategy: What's Next for Small Business Exporters?" Panel: Miriam Sapiro, deputy U.S. Trade Representative; Thomas Crafton, president, Thermcraft Inc., Winston Salem, N.C., representing National Association of Manufacturers; Robert B. Sinner, partner and president, SB&B Foods Inc., Casselton, N.D., representing American Soybean Association; Mark Luden, CEO, The Guitammer Co., Westerville, Ohio, representing Consumer Electronics Association.
US access to consumer markets in China: Subcommittee hearing. House Financial Services — International Monetary Policy and Trade Panel hearing on the access US financial services firms have to the consumer market in China and what actions the US can take to support firms seeking to do business in China.
Impact of Dodd-Frank: Subcommittee hearing. House Financial Services Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit hearing on the impact of the Dodd-Frank Act, specifically what it means to be a systemically important financial institution.
Energy reports: Weekly Petroleum Status Report (EIA) | Weekly ethanol plant production (EIA).
Economic reports: Weekly mortgage applications (Labor Dept.) | MBA Purchase Applications. | Housing Starts | Industrial Production | FOMC Minutes.
USDA reports: Broiler Hatchery (NASS) | Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook (ERS) | Agricultural Chemical Usage - Field Crops (NASS).

Thursday, May 17
Bretton Woods conference:
IMF Chief Christine Lagarde and World Bank President Robert Zoellick speak about debt at the Bretton Woods conference in Washington.
Regulations regarding swap data: Committee markup. House Agriculture Committee will mark up several pieces of legislation to reform federal regulations regarding swap data. One measure (HR 4235) would repeal certain requirements for regulatory authorities to obtain access to swap data. A second bill (HR 1838) would prohibit federal bailouts of swap dealers (HR 1838). The committee also will mark up a bill (HR 3283) which would provide regulatory exemptions to certain swaps.
Clean Energy Standard Act of 2012: Committee hearing. Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee.
Job creation and trade modernization: Subcommittee hearing. House Ways and Means — Subcommittee on Trade.
Trade with Asia-Pacific region: Subcommittee hearing. House Foreign Affairs – Subcommittee on Asia and the Pacific hearing to examine the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement, a treaty that includes Australia, Brunei Darussalam, Chile, Malaysia, New Zealand, Peru, Singapore, and Vietnam.
Iran sanctions: Committee hearing. House Foreign Affairs Committee.
Transportation: Weekly Traffic of Major Railroads (Assn. Of American Railroads) | Grain Transportation Report (AMS).
Energy reports: Weekly US underground natural gas stocks (EIA).
Economic reports: Jobless Claims (Labor Dept.) | Weekly Mortgage Rates (Freddie Mac) | ICI weekly money market mutual fund data | Phila. Fed Survey | Leading Indicators.
USDA reports: Export Sales (FAS).

Friday, May 18
The Group of Eight summit begins at Camp David in Maryland, minus Russian President Vladimir Putin. The focus will be on Europe, and about its impact on the global economy.
President Obama will deliver the opening keynote to the Symposium on Global Agriculture and Food Security at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC.
World economy: A two-day debate on the world economy begins in London at the annual meeting and business forum of the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development.
Farm Bill - Conservation, Energy and Forestry: Subcommittee hearing. House Agriculture — Subcommittee on Conservation, Energy and Forestry.
Bank capital requirements: Subcommittee hearing. House Financial Services — Subcommittee on Financial Institutions and Consumer Credit.
Energy: Monthly Petroleum Statistical Report (API).
USDA reports: Cattle on Feed (NASS) | Milk Production (NASS) | Peanut Prices (NASS).

Sunday, May 20
Chicago hosts Nato leaders:
The two-day Nato Summit begins in Chicago, where more than 60 national leaders will discuss security in the European and Atlantic area.



NOTE: This column is copyrighted material, therefore reproduction or retransmission is prohibited under U.S. copyright laws.


 


 

 

 

 

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