The US and Chinese trade teams are scheduled to speak over the phone, just a few days before the US is set to impose a new 10% tariff on almost $150bn-worth of Chinese goods (after delaying levies on a similar amount until December). There is a chance that the tariff may be delayed, although this is unlikely – the US does not want to give the impression that it is capitulating, while China seems reluctant to make concessions at this stage. Meanwhile, China will report industrial profits. Looking beyond volatility around the Chinese New Year, industrial-profit growth has fallen over the past year. Profits shrank by 3.1% year-on-year in June, the worst result since December 2015 and far below the 27.7% year-on-year growth recorded in September 2017. The trade war is probably behind this and is likely to continue to weigh on profits going forward. Meanwhile, the US Conference Board will report consumer confidence. The index has been at elevated levels during the first half of this year, reflecting the strong labour market. Consensus estimates expect confidence to edge down slightly from 135.7 in July to 130 in August. Separately, US house-price inflation should continue to moderate in both June and the second quarter. The main measures all point to lower inflation this year – the S&P/Case-Shiller index expanded by 3.4% year-on-year in May, down from 6.8% a year earlier. But according to the Federal Housing Finance Agency measure, the slowdown has been less severe and house-price inflation is still running at 5%.