Debt ceiling, Fed meeting, Sec. Blinken travels: 3 things to watch in politics this week
It's a blockbuster week for investors with earnings, the Fed's first meeting of 2023, and economic data on deck.
Meanwhile, in Washington, D.C., politicians remain focused on the debt ceiling, and Secretary of State Tony Blinken is traveling abroad to meet with leaders in China and the Middle East.
Here are three things to watch this week in politics:
Biden and McCarthy to discuss debt ceiling
President Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) will meet at the White House this week to discuss a range of issues.
Their talks will likely focus on a brewing political battle regarding raising the nation's debt ceiling that is set to come to a head in late summer and early fall.
Republicans would like to see cuts to the nation's entitlement programs while Democrats are arguing that now is not the time to cut funding during a potential looming economic recession.
"I want to find a reasonable and responsible way that we can lift the debt ceiling but take control of this runaway spending," McCarthy said Sunday on CBS's Face the Nation with Margaret Brennan. "I want to sit down together, work out an agreement that we can move forward, to put us on a path to balance [and] not put any of our debt in jeopardy at the same time."
Federal Reserve meeting in focus
Fed Chair Powell will deliver remarks and answer questions on Wednesday after the Federal Reserve is expected to raise interest rates by 25 basis points.
Powell has said that the rate hikes are needed to combat inflation, but he's faced criticism from progressives who worry that the central bank could tilt the economy into a recession.
Elsewhere, other economic indicators are set to be released to cap off a busy week for markets.
On Friday, the Bureau of Labor Statistics will release January's jobs data. Barron's reported that economists are anticipating that the U.S. added 190,000 jobs in January and that unemployment will have ticked up from 3.5% to 3.6%.
Sec. Bliken travels to Middle East, China
Secretary of State Tony Blinken is traveling abroad this week and will head to Beijing, where he will likely press Chinese officials to not support Russia in its war against Ukraine.
Last week, Bloomberg reported that some Chinese-based companies, which are backed by the Chinese Communist Party, have been helping Russian companies skirt U.S. sanctions and export controls as well as potentially providing nonlethal support to Russia.
Before heading to Beijing, Blinken will go to the Middle East, where he is scheduled to meet separately with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, and Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas, according to his State Department schedule.
There, Blinken is expected to consult with leaders on the escalating tensions and violence in the region.
Kevin Cirilli is a visiting media fellow at the Atlantic Council's Global China Hub and the Krach Institute for Tech Diplomacy at Purdue. Follow him on LinkedIn here.
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