(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) With the Ukraine conflict reviving a Cold War-like standoff between Moscow and Washington, U.S. President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin each hold bilateral meetings with French President Francois Hollande on the eve of World War Two D-Day landings commemoration on Friday in northern France. Besides Ukraine, Hollande’s meeting with Obama also comes at a time of mounting tension between Paris and Washington over reports that U.S. bank regulators could fine French bank BNP Paribas $10 billion or more in relation to a sanctions-busting probe, a prospect that the French side will broach with Obama after several top ministers decried what they reckon would be an excessive fine that presents a potential threat to banking stability at a delicate moment for economic recovery in Europe.
The European Central Bank is widely expected to trim what little it has left of its refinancing rate, send its deposit rate into negative territory and launch a long-term refinancing operation targeted at businesses at its policy meeting. Even if the central bank lives up to expectations - cut its deposit rate to -0.10 percent from the current zero percent and trim its refinancing rate to 0.10 percent - such moves would only lower near-term money market rates slightly, a Reuters poll found. (0745/1145) The U.S. Labor Department is expected to release weekly data on jobless claims for state unemployment benefits. The number of Americans filing new claims is likely to increase to 310,000 from a seasonally adjusted 300,000 for previous week. The number of people still receiving benefits is expected to show a rise to 2.63 million. (0830/1230) Minneapolis Fed President Narayana Kocherlakota discusses the impact of low real interest rates at a Boston College finance conference. (1330/1730) General Motors will hold a news conference at which it is expected to release the findings of the company’s internal probe into why it took so long to discover a defective ignition switch linked to at least 13 deaths. GM has scheduled a company town hall for CEO Mary Barra, followed by a news conference and a call with analysts to provide an update on the faulty switch. VeriFone Systems is expected to report second-quarter profit above analysts’ estimates, according to StarMine data, helped by its restructuring and cost-cutting efforts. The company, which makes credit card swipe machines, is also likely to benefit from the ongoing EMV chip upgradation of payment cards in the United States in the wake of several data breaches at U.S. retailers, including one at Target Corp. Truck and engine maker Navistar is likely to be hit by lower truck sales in its core North American market. The company, scheduled to report second-quarter results before the bell, is still trying to recover from a disastrous engine redesign in 2012 that failed to meet regulatory standards and forced the company to source engines from rival Cummins. Investors will be looking for an update on when the company is likely to stop sourcing engines from Cummins altogether. Logistic company UTi Worldwide, expected to report its first-quarter results, is likely to take a hit from costs associated with the implementation of its new freight forwarding operating system. But a modest increase in air freight volume, particularly in North America, is expected to offset some of the costs. Investors will be interested in knowing about the company’s plan for 2014 and details on the pricing environment. Brazil’s central bank is scheduled to release minutes from its last policy meeting. The minutes will likely shed some light on whether authorities will keep interest rates on hold for more time or raise them as soon as inflationary pressures rise again. The bank paused its rate-hiking cycle on May 28, but warned that it is ready to raise rates again if inflation fails to subside. Separately, Mexico’s consumer confidence data for May will help gauge if domestic demand is building up after sentiment rose to a four-month high in April. (0900/1300) Statistics Canada is scheduled to release building permits data for April. The value of building permits is expected to increase 4.0 percent, following a 3.0 percent drop in previous month. (0830/1230) Separately, the seasonally adjusted Ivey Purchasing Managers Index is likely to show that pace of purchasing activity increased to 56.0 in May from 54.1 in April. (1000/1400) (Compiled By Sourav Bose in Bangalore)