A look ahead at the key events leading the news agenda next week, from the team at Foresight News. Delivered to your inbox on Fridays.
Leading the week
After a few days in which the economic headlines have been both resoundingly awful and cautiously optimistic, next week provides an opportunity to assess two sectors which look set to dominate news agendas over the coming months. On Tuesday (August 15) the ONS releases labour market data for the three months to June which, after last month’s unexpected rise in unemployment, will be closely watched for further signs that inflationary pressures are taking hold in the jobs market and the continuing impact of higher prices on wage growth. Then on Wednesday (August 16) July’s CPI index will show whether the Bank of England’s efforts are starting to have the desired effect or if we are indeed entering a 1970s-style period of stagflation; the data is also used to inform how much rail fares will rise by in January, so commuters can look forward to calculating how much they’ll be forking out on next year’s season tickets.
The FIFA Women’s World Cup reaches its conclusion next week after a dramatic first half of the tournament received record high viewing figures in co-host nation Australia. The first semi-final sees Sweden face Spain on Tuesday (August 15), with the Swedes now frontrunners for the trophy after defeating pre-tournament favourites USA and Japan in their knockout ties. Then, if England emerge victorious from their quarter-final clash against Colombia this weekend they will face either Australia or France in the second semi-final on Wednesday (August 16) in Sydney. The Lionesses will have to reach what would be a first-ever world cup final without Lauren James, their player of the tournament so far, after the Chelsea star was suspended for two games for a stamp in the quarter-final against Nigeria; the stage could be set, however, for a triumphant return to action in the final in Sydney on Sunday (August 20). A third-place playoff, featuring the losers of both semi-finals, takes place in Brisbane on Friday (August 19).
Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis is expected to present her case to an Atlanta grand jury next week to indict former President Donald Trump and others over alleged efforts to intervene in the 2020 election. Willis, who has hinted an indictment will come by Friday (August 18), has been leading an investigation since February 2021 into Trump’s infamous phone call with Georgia Secretary of State Brad Raffensperger, in which he urged the official to ‘find 11,780 votes’. Observers expect the scope and the complexity of the case mean Willis will take at least two days to present to the grand jury, so a vote to indict is most likely on Tuesday (August 13) or Friday. Trump, who has already been indicted three times this year, remains the clear frontrunner to secure the Republican nomination for 2024.
US President Joe Biden hosts Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida and South Korean President Yoon Suk-yeol for a trilateral summit in Camp David on Friday (August 18). The three leaders last met in May on the margins of the Japan-hosted G7 summit, but these talks represent a first standalone meeting not associated with a broader international summit. Discussions are set to focus on cooperation in the Indo-Pacific region, North Korea, and China; the war in the Ukraine, with its sprawling ramifications, is also likely to come up as well at a summit which comes amid improved relations between Tokyo and Seoul.
Ecuador holds early presidential and parliamentary elections on Sunday (August 20) after outgoing president Guillermo Lasso dissolved the National Assembly in May, invoking the so-called muerte cruzada ahead of an impeachment vote over his alleged inaction over an embezzlement scheme. Earlier this week, the assassination of presidential candidate Fernando Villavicencio following a rally in the country’s capital Quito prompted Lasso to declare a 60-day state of emergency. Vilavicencio, one of eight candidates seeking the presidency, was a vocal critic of organized crime and corruption though not considered a frontrunner. A runoff will take place on October 15 if no candidate secures more than 50% of votes in the first round.