The minutes of the July 31-Aug. 1 meeting of the Federal Open Market Committee, to be released on Wednesday, will dominate markets in a week light on data.
The minutes from the FOMC meeting have the potential to be market-moving: They may reveal how eager Fed officials are to ease further and what conditions might make additional easing more likely. Overall, the minutes should have a distinctly dovish tone that may revive optimism that the Fed will launch additional easing soon.
U.S. housing data -- existing and new home sales -- should show a continued modest gain in housing demand.
The main euro zone event of the week will be the publication of the latest composite Purchasing Managers' Index figures, which are expected to provide firmer signs that the region is officially in recession.
Below are entries on the economic calendar Aug. 20-24. All listed times are EDT.
8:30 a.m. -- The Chicago Fed Midwest Manufacturing Index for July.
E17 -- June construction output
Thailand -- Q2 GDP
Chile -- Q2 GDP
8:45 a.m. -- Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart (FOMC voter) speaks at the Latin American Chamber of Commerce and the World Affairs Council on the topic "The U.S. economic outlook and implications for Latin America" in Georgia.
Australia -- Reserve Bank of Australia board minutes for August
Norway -- Central Bank Governor Oeystein Olsen speaks to Norwegian diplomatic representative in Oslo.
Japan -- Index of all-industry activity for June and trade balance for July
Poland -- July core inflation
7:00 a.m. -- Mortgage Bankers Association's mortgage index for the week ending Aug. 17
10:00 a.m. -- Economists expect existing home sales to rise 3.8 percent in July to 4.52 million units after tumbling 5.4 percent in June.
10:30 a.m. -- Crude oil inventories for the week ending Aug. 17
2:00 p.m. -- The Federal Open Market Committee releases minutes from its July 31-Aug. 1 meeting. Because the FOMC did not release updated forecasts at the August meeting, the discussion may also give some insight into how Fed officials' views on the outlook are evolving. The Fed added two phrases to their policy guidance in the August statement: that they will "closely monitor incoming information" and that they "will provide additional accommodation as needed." Details about how the voting members decided on this language change could also be informative. The June minutes note that "several participants commented that it would be desirable to explore the possibility of developing new tools," so any discussion of such "new tools" would be noteworthy as well. All told, the minutes should have a distinctly dovish tone that may revive optimism that the Fed will launch additional easing soon.
Norway -- June unemployment rate
South Africa -- July CPI
Brazil -- June economic activity index
8:30 a.m. -- Economists look for initial jobless claims to edge down to 365,000 for the week ending Aug. 17, from 366,000 in the prior week.
8:58 a.m. -- Markit Flash Manufacturing PMI likely fell to 51.3 in August, from 51.4 in July.
10:00 a.m. -- The FHFA Home Price Index probably rose 0.3 percent in June, after rising 0.8 percent in May.
10:00 a.m. -- Economists look for new home sales to increase just more than 4 percent to 365,000 in July. This will partly reverse the 8.4 percent drop in June.
China -- HSBC flash manufacturing PMI index for August
Singapore -- July CPI
Germany -- Q2 GDP, final reading
Norway -- Q2 GDP
Mexico -- Q2 nominal GDP
E17 -- August flash consumer confidence index
E17 -- August flash manufacturing PMI index and flash services PMI index
France -- August flash manufacturing PMI index and flash services PMI index
Germany -- August flash manufacturing PMI index and flash services PMI index
Sweden -- July unemployment rate
Taiwan -- July industrial production
New Zealand -- July trade balance
8:30 a.m. -- Economists forecast durable goods orders will increase 2.4 percent in July after a gain of 1.3 percent in June. The gain would most likely be driven by nondefense aircraft orders, which tend to be the most volatile component of the report. Excluding defense and aircraft orders, the core capital goods orders likely rose 0.8 percent in July, after declining 1.7 percent in the prior month.
Spain -- Cabinet meets, followed by news conference
Germany -- Chancellor Angela Merkel and Greece Prime Minister Antonis Samaras discuss the Greece economic and fiscal situation.
Colombia -- August overnight lending rate
Singapore -- July industrial production
U.K. -- Q2 GDP, second release
Sources: Central banks, European Commission, Reuters, Bank of America Merrill Lynch, Market News, Capital Economics, Nomura