Another Stopgap Spending Bill as Tardy Lawmakers Again Delay FY 2020 Measure

Posted on 11/18/2019 5:08 AM

Impeachment inquiry hearings | FOMC meeting | Labor bill markup | Cabinet meeting

Impeachment inquiry hearings continue in the House, while Wednesday brings the latest Democratic presidential debate. On the work front, the House will take up another stopgap spending measure for fiscal year 2020 funding because Congress has yet to pass a single full-year spending bill. A potential labor/immigration bill markup may take place Wednesday, but it is not expected to reach President Trump's desk. President Trump on Tuesday holds a Cabinet meeting and that usually brings some news.

 

House and Senate lawmakers are in session, working on some issues they have disagreed on for nearly the entire session.

The House is currently scheduled to adjourn on Dec. 12, leaving just 14 legislative days in 2019, but many expect the session to go an additional week.

The Senate considers judicial and executive nominations and may take up Hong Kong bill that lead sponsor Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said is on an expedited track.

No Senate action on Export-Import Bank legislation. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said he won't take up the House bill funding the Export-Import Bank for the next decade, effectively killing the legislation. McConnell said he would prefer to extend the agency's charter, which will otherwise expire Nov. 21, as part of an upcoming government funding bill.

House is set to vote to extend fiscal year 2020 government funding by about a month to Dec. 20; current funding expires Nov. 20. Congress has yet to pass a single full-year spending bill.

The House also will vote on reauthorizing the Terrorism Risk Insurance Act and a bill addressing workplace violence in healthcare and social service industries.

A potential labor/immigration bill markup may take place Wednesday, but it is not expected to reach President Trump's desk. The measure is the Farm Workforce Modernization Act, the bill led by Subcommittee Chairwoman Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) and Congressman Dan Newhouse (R-Wash.). It currently has 46 cosponsors (22 Republicans) and is scheduled for markup in the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday, Nov. 20.

The legislation generally allows undocumented workers who have performed agricultural jobs over the past two years to receive legal status as certified agricultural workers, a status that may be extended as long as the worker continues to perform a specified level of agricultural work. After a specified number of years, the worker may apply for permanent lawful resident which does not require performance of agricultural work.

The legislation also modifies the H-2A guest worker program and requires E-verify for agriculture.

The Farm Bureau and others have been working to address several concerns over the legislation.

Progress on the pending U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) could occur this week, following House Speaker Nancy Pelosi's (D-Calif.) comments last week that an agreement is “imminent.”

USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue, speaking to farm broadcasters on Friday in Kansas City, Mo., expressed confidence that Congress would approve the agreement before the end of the year. “I’m optimistic it will get done. In light of everything else going on in Washington, D.C., both Democrats and Republicans need to go home over the Christmas break and say this got done,” Perdue said.

On another trade matter, this one regarding the U.S./Japan mini-trade agreement that includes agriculture, Japan’s House of Representatives is expected to vote Tuesday on the recently concluded agricultural trade deal. Japan's Diet’s upper chamber will consider the agreement on Wednesday. Meanwhile, the House Ways and Means Committee subcommittee on trade on Wednesday will hold a hearing on the agreement.

On the nomination front, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will meet Tuesday to consider the nominations of Dan Brouillette for Energy secretary, James Danly for Federal Energy Regulatory Commissioner and Katharine MacGregor for deputy Interior secretary.

On Wednesday, the Senate Health Committee will consider the nomination of Stephen Hahn to be FDA commissioner.

Ten Democratic presidential candidates have qualified for this Wednesday’s debate in Georgia. Those on the stage will be: former Vice President Joe Biden; New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker; Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana; Hawaii Rep. Tulsi Gabbard; California Sen. Kamala Harris; Minnesota Sen. Amy Klobuchar; Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders; billionaire activist Tom Steyer of California; Massachusetts Sen. Elizabeth Warren; and entrepreneur Andrew Yang of New York.

Economic updates and Federal Reserve appearances for the week include:

Monday:
— Cleveland Federal Reserve Bank President Loretta Mester speaks in a fireside chat at the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland.
— National Association of Home Builders releases its Housing Market Index for November. Consensus estimates are for a 72 reading, up from October’s 71.
— Treasury International Capital

Tuesday:
— New York Federal Reserve Bank President John Williams speaks in a moderated "One-on-One with New York Fed President and CEO John Williams" session at the Securities Industry and Financial Markets Association (SIFMA) Annual Meeting in Washington, DC.
— Census Bureau reports residential construction data for October. Economists forecast a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 1.39 million building permits and 1.32 million housing starts. This compares with 1.39 million and 1.26 million in September, respectively.
— E-Commerce Retail Sales

Wednesday:
— MBA Mortgage Applications
— Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) releases minutes from its previous monetary-policy meeting at the end October, at which the Fed cut rates by a quarter-percentage-point. The minutes will be reviewed for clues about the direction of future policy, although Fed Chairman Jerome Powell last week reiterated his wait-and-see policy toward interest rates. However, he warned that "sluggish growth abroad and trade developments" remain headwinds. Powell also said the U.S. economy, which is currently experiencing unemployment near a 50-year low, can "operate at a much-lower level of unemployment than many would have thought."

Thursday:
— Cleveland Federal Reserve Bank President Loretta Mester speaks at the "2019 Financial Stability Conference: Risks, Resilience, and Policy" event in Cleveland, Ohio.
— Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank President Neel Kashkari speaks in a moderated discussion at the Minnesota Chamber of Commerce Economic Summit in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
— Former Fed Chair Janet Yellen speaks about the economy at an event in New York City.
— Labor Department is likely to show initial jobless claims declined to a seasonally adjusted 220,000 for the week ended Nov. 16.
— National Association of Realtors reports existing-home sales for October. Consensus estimates are for a seasonally adjusted annual rate of 5.5 million, up 2.2% from September’s 5.4 million.
— Philadelphia Fed Business Outlook Survey
— Leading Indicators
— Fed Balance Sheet
— Money Supply

Friday:
— IHS Markit releases its Composite Purchasing Managers Index for November. Economists forecast a 51.9 reading, up from October’s 50.9, which was just above the expansionary level of 50.
— Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City releases its Manufacturing Survey for November. Expectations are for a reading of +1, up from October’s -3. The survey has produced negative readings for four consecutive months, suggesting contraction in the region’s manufacturing sector.
— The University of Michigan’s final consumer sentiment index for November is expected to tick slightly lower from earlier in the month.

Key USDA & international ag and energy-related reports and events on tap:

Monday, Nov. 18

Ag reports and events:

  • Export Inspections
  • Crop Progress
  • Turkey Hatchery
  • EU weekly grain, oilseed import and export data

Energy reports and events:

  • EIA Drilling Productivity Report
  • Eurasia Group energy summit
  • Joint Organizations Database Initiative (JODI) scheduled to update monthly data on oil production, exports

Tuesday, Nov. 19

Ag reports and events:

  • Fruit and Tree Nut Data
  • Vegetables and Pulses Data
  • Milk Production
  • FT Global Food Systems conference, London
  • International Palm Oil Congress & Exhibition (PIPOC), Kuala Lumpur

Energy reports and events:

  • API weekly U.S. oil inventory report

Wednesday, Nov. 20

Ag reports and events:

  • Broiler Hatchery
  • Asia Pacific Agri Food Innovation Week, Singapore
  • International Palm Oil Congress & Exhibition
  • World Bank’s report on agricultural transformation in Malaysia
  • AmSpec and Intertek release Malaysia’s Nov. 1-20 palm oil shipment data

Energy reports and events:

  • EIA weekly U.S. oil inventory report
  • U.S. weekly ethanol inventories

Thursday, Nov. 21

Ag reports and events:

  • Weekly Export Sales
  • Cotton & Wool Yearbook Tables
  • Sugar: World Markets and Trade
  • Farm Labor
  • Livestock Slaughter
  • Port of Rouen data on French grain exports
  • IGC’s monthly grains report
  • International Palm Oil Congress & Exhibition

Energy reports and events:

  • EIA natural gas storage change

Friday, Nov. 22

Ag reports and events:

  • CFTC weekly commitments of traders report on various U.S. futures and options contracts.
  • Peanut Prices
  • Cattle on Feed
  • Chickens and Eggs
  • Cold Storage
  • FranceAgriMer weekly crop progress

Energy reports and events:

  • Baker Hughes weekly U.S. oil/gas rig counts

Other reports and events this week include:

Monday, Nov. 18

  • Rural Broadband Association holds its 2019 Telecom Executive Policy Summit, Nov. 18-19.
  • Income and wealth inequality. Cato Institute briefing.
  • Supreme Court. George Mason University (GMU) holds its second annual Roger Wilkins Lecture with Supreme Court Justice Elena Kagan.
  • U.S. aid. U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Administrator Mark Green and Advisor to the President Ivanka Trump hmake announcements on new partnerships and activities of the Women's Global Development and Prosperity (W-GDP) Initiative.
  • Obesity. Trust for America's Health briefing on a report titled "The State of Obesity 2019: Better Policies for a Healthier America."
  • China maritime actions. Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) and the Japan Institute of International Affairs discussion on "China's Maritime Ambitions in the First Island Chain and Beyond."
  • Korea-U.S. cooperation. Woodrow Wilson Center' (WWC) Hyundai Motor-Korea Foundation Center for Korean History and Public Policy discussion on "ROK-U.S. Cooperation in an Era of U.S.-China Strategic Competition."

Tuesday, Nov. 19

  • Cabinet meeting will be held by President Trump.
  • Farm Foundation forum, “Global Agricultural Productivity & Hunger: Are We Doing Enough?”
  • Water quality. Senate Environment Committee hearing on S 1087, the Water Quality Certification Improvement Act of 2019.
  • China. Senate Homeland Investigations Subcommittee hearing on how to prevent China from recruiting U.S. researchers.
  • Ag credit conditions. House Agriculture Commodity Exchanges, Energy and Credit Subcommittee Hearing on “Review of Credit Conditions: Report from the Farm Credit Administration (FCA).”
  • Civil rights, USDA. House Agriculture Nutrition, Oversight and Department Operations Subcommittee Hearing on “Review of the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights.”
  • Next Water Resources Development Act. House Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee hearing on Concepts for the Next Water Resources Development Act: Promoting Resiliency of our Nation’s Water Resources Infrastructure.
  • Trump impeachment inquiry. House Select Intelligence Committee hearing on "Impeachment Inquiry: Ms. Williams and Lt. Col. Vindman."
  • Immigration/DACA. Several Democratic lawmakers hold a news conference with plaintiffs in the upcoming DACA case before the US Supreme Court and immigration advocates to call on the Trump Administration to reverse their baseless termination of DACA.
  • International Maritime regulations. State Department holds a meeting to prepare for the 30th Extraordinary Council Session (CES30), the 31st Assembly (A31), and the 123rd Council Session (C123) of the International Maritime Organization (IMO), to be held at the IMO Headquarters, United Kingdom, Nov. 21-22; Nov. 25-Dec. 5; and, Dec. 6.
  • Securities and Exchange Commission meeting on matters relating to rules and regulations affecting small and emerging companies under the federal securities laws.
  • Australian energy. United States Energy Association (USEA) briefing on "The Future of Energy in Australia."
  • U.S., China & Europe. Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) discussion on "The U.S., China, and Europe."

Wednesday, Nov. 20

  • U.S./Japan trade agreement. House Ways and Means subcommittee hearing.
  • Nomination: Treasury. Senate Banking Committee hearing on nominations including Mitchell Silk to be an asst. Treasury Secretary.
  • Nomination: FDA. Senate Health Committee will consider nomination of Stephen Hahn to be FDA commissioner.
  • Automated vehicles. Senate Commerce Committee hearing.
  • Labor/immigration reform. House Judiciary Committee potential mark-up of HR 4916, The Farm Workforce Modernization Act.
  • Climate change. House Appropriations Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing on the Energy Department's role in addressing climate change. Former Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz is among those scheduled to testify.
  • Terrorism. A bill extending a program designed to curb financial damage from potential terrorist attacks will be marked up by the Senate Banking Committee. The Senate bill, similar to the House Financial Services version approved in committee at the end of October, paves the way for the bill to sail through the Senate Banking Committee.
  • Sustainable Agriculture Summit, through Thursday, Indianapolis.
  • Bill and Hillary Clinton host conference on economic inclusion and growth; Little Rock, Ark.
  • Democratic presidential candidate debate, Atlanta, Georgia.
  • Trump impeachment inquiry. House Select Intelligence Committee hearing on "Impeachment Inquiry: Ambassador Sondland” in the morning, and then Ms. Cooper and Mr. Hale” in the afternoon.
  • U.S. debt. House Budget Committee hearing on "Reexamining the Economic Costs of Debt."
  • Clean economy. House Energy & Commerce Environment and Climate Change Subcommittee hearing on "Building a 100% Clean Economy: The Challenges Facing Frontline Communities."
  • Climate change & competition. House Armed Services Intelligence and Emerging Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee hearing on "Climate Change in the Era of Strategic Competition."
  • Climate change risks & costs. House Select Climate Crisis Committee hearing on "Creating a Climate Resilient America: Reducing Risks and Costs."
  • Biomass research. DOE Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy meeting of the Biomass Research and Development Technical Advisory Committee to develop advice and guidance that promotes research and development leading to the production of biobased fuels and biobased products.
  • Energy issues. Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) discussion on "Energy Transition Outlook 2019."
  • Rural health. Rural Health Information Hub webinar to introduce the Rural Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Toolkit.

Thursday, Nov. 21

  • Big data in financial services. House Financial Services Committee hearing.
  • FCC spectrum auctions programs. Senate Financial Services Appropriations Subcommittee hearing.
  • Trump impeachment inquiry. House Select Intelligence Committee hearing on "Impeachment Inquiry: Dr. Hill."
  • WTO situation. Washington International Trade Association (WITA) discussion on "The Crisis at the WTO (World Trade Organization): Where Do We Go From Here," focusing on the expected paralysis of the WTO Appellate Body in December, 2019 if the U.S. "does not allow for the appointment of new judges."
  • Carbon pricing. Resources for the Future (RFF) holds a discussion on "The Future of Carbon Pricing: Exploring the Latest Global Developments."

Friday, Nov. 22

  • Advanced carbon capture research/development. House Science, Space and Technology Committee field hearing at Hilton University of Houston, Houston, Texas, on "The Future of Advanced Carbon Capture Research and Development."
  • China, German kegs, tomatoes from Mexico. International Trade Commission meeting to vote on Inv. Nos. 701-TA-610 and 731-TA-1425-1426, Refillable Stainless Steel Kegs from China and Germany, and is scheduled to complete and file its determinations and views of the Commission by Dec. 9, 2019; and vote on Inv. No. 731-TA-747, Fresh Tomatoes from Mexico, and is scheduled to complete and file its determination and views of the Commission by Dec. 9, 2019.

 

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