What to Watch in the Day Ahead - Thursday, March 26
(The Day Ahead is an email and PDF publication that includes the day's major stories and events, analyses and other features. To receive The Day Ahead, Eikon users can register at . Thomson One users can register at RT/DAY/US. All times in ET/GMT) U.S. Labor Department is scheduled to issue weekly jAobless claims. Economists polled by Reuters expect initial claims for state unemployment benefits to decline 1,000 to a seasonally adjusted 290,000 in comparison to prior week's reading of 291,000. (0830/1230) Separately, financial data firm Markit is due to release its preliminary reading of its Purchasing Managers Index for the service sector in March. (0945/1345)
The consulting and outsourcing company Accenture is expected to report a second-quarter profit below estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The company has been battling the effects of a stronger dollar, which analysts believe could trigger another cut in Accenture's full-year profit forecast. Accenture's outsourcing business, which competes with India's Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services, has faced pricing pressure amid sluggish business spending and stiff competition in the last few quarters.
ConAgra Foods Inc, the maker of Slim Jim beef jerky and Chef Boyardee pasta, reports third-quarter results. The company announced last month that it had appointed former Hillshire Brands Co Chief Executive Sean Connolly its CEO, replacing Gary Rodkin. ConAgra also cut its full-year profit forecast, citing a stronger dollar and weak sales in its private brands business.
Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta President Dennis Lockhart participates in discussion on monetary policy and the economic outlook before the Engage International Investment Education Symposium, in Detroit. (0900/1300)
The recreational vehicle maker Winnebago Industries is expected to report higher second-quarter profit, helped by higher sales of its towable and motorhomes and the fall in oil prices. Winnebago is also likely to benefit from a slightly lesser harsh winter compared to last year. Rival Thor Industries reported better-than-expected quarterly profit and said it benefited from better weather in the quarter unlike last year. When the company reports earnings, investors will be looking for outlook for the rest of the year and how the company is gearing up for the summer months, its key period when sales of recreational vehicle peaks.
Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz is due to speak at the Canada-UK Chamber of Commerce. (0800/1200) After a surprise rate cut in January, analysts anticipate there will be one more reduction this year. Poloz's subsequent press conference could help solidify expectations over whether the bank will cut rates or stay on the sidelines at its next meeting in April.
Brazil's government is scheduled to release official unemployment numbers for February. Brazil's jobless rate rose from an all-time low to the highest in more than one year in January, flagging the recessionary risks of a government austerity drive which has raised taxes and reined in spending. Economists polled by Reuters expect the rate to rise 5.70 percent from January's 5.30 percent. (0830/1230)
Mexico's central bank is expected to announce that it has decided to hold interest rates at a record low of 3 percent, according to 26 of 27 analysts polled by Reuters, despite a slump in the peso. (1100/1500) Separately, Argentina's government is scheduled to release February industrial production data. Analysts expect industrial output to shrink 1.8 percent.
European Central Bank president Mario Draghi addresses the Italian parliament's finance and EU policy committees. Draghi is expected to talk about ECB monetary policy, structural reform and economic growth in the euro zone. (0800/1200) (Compiled by Astha Rawat in Bengaluru; Editing by Joyjeet Das)
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