two central bankers

Welcome to the biggest day of the month for North American traders.

The appetizer is at the bottom of the hour with US wholsale inventories and advance goods trade balance for December. US terms of trade have been quietly deteriorating and that will be an important point to watch in today's slate but not likely to be a market mover.

The real action s tarts at 10 am ET with the BOC decision. A hike is a close call with markets now leaning 60/40 towards action today. Macklem and Senior Deputy Rogers will hold a press conference an hour later.

Also at 10 am ET, we get the latest data on US new home sales. Reports suggest an early start to the spring buying season but we might have to wait until the January data to see that.

Oil will remain in focus as brent hits a fresh high since 2014. The weekly US EIA inventories are due at 10:30 am ET (1530 GMT).

The main event is at 2 pm ET (1900 GMT) with the FOMC decision. The odds of a change in policy are low but how the Fed tees up a March hike and sends signals about rate hikes beyond that will be key. The market is also trying to get a sense at how quickly the balance sheet runs off. Powell will hold a press conference 30 minutes later.

Mixed in with all this is high volatility throughout markets, with S&P 500 futures set to rebound 65 points and the loonie leading in FX.

For more, see the economic calendar.