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5 things to watch on the ASX 200 next week

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Last week was one to forget for the S&P/ASX 200 Index (ASX: XJO). The benchmark index was well and truly out of form and lost 2.9% over the week to end at 5,791.5 points.

Another busy five days is expected next week. Here are five things to watch:

ASX 200 to start the week strongly.

The ASX 200 index looks set to start the week with a decent gain after a better than expected night of trade on Wall Street on Friday. According to the latest SPI futures, the ASX 200 is expected to rise 67 points at the open. In the United States, the Dow Jones fell 0.5%, the S&P 500 dropped 0.95%, and the Nasdaq fell 2.2%. Futures contracts were pointing to more severe declines during afternoon trade on Friday.

Reserve Bank meeting.

On Tuesday the Reserve Bank will hold its October meeting and make a decision on the cash rate. According to the latest cash rate futures, the market is currently pricing in a 67% probability of a rate cut at the meeting. While I’m not convinced rates will go to zero, I suspect a cut from 0.25% to 0.1% could be possible based on recent comments out of the central bank.

Dividends, dividends, dividends.

Next week is another busy one for dividends. Plumbing parts company Reece Ltd (ASX: REH) and fuel retailer Viva Energy Group Ltd (ASX: VEA) are due to go ex-dividend on Monday and Tuesday, respectively. Companies paying dividends next week include the likes of Atlas Arteria Group (ASX: ALX), Carsales.Com Ltd (ASX: CAR), CSL Limited (ASX: CSL), InvoCare Limited (ASX: IVC), NIB Holdings Limited (ASX: NHF), and Woolworths Group Ltd (ASX: WOW).

Federal Budget.

On Tuesday night Scott Morrison and Josh Frydenberg will be handing down the Federal Budget. The government intends to make this a budget focused on creating jobs and driving Australia out of its recession. There is speculation the government may bring forward personal tax cuts and extend the HomeBuilder package. In total, it is expected to announce $140 billion worth of stimulus over the next four years.

Annual general meetings.

Annual general meeting season continues next week. On Wednesday, both logistics solutions company Brambles Limited (ASX: BXB) and toll road operator Transurban Group (ASX: TCL) will hold their annual general meeting. Trading updates could potentially be released at the meetings.

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James Mickleboro has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool Australia's parent company Motley Fool Holdings Inc. owns shares of CSL Ltd. The Motley Fool Australia owns shares of Transurban Group and Woolworths Limited. The Motley Fool Australia has recommended InvoCare Limited and NIB Holdings Limited. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Scott Phillips.

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