(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) WEEK AHEAD The recent fear-based volatility in markets has diminished, though concerns about global demand remain high. That’s helped the dollar reassert its recent strength after a few weeks of weakness, but much again will depend on just how dovish the Federal Reserve is in the coming week. Speculators continue to bet against the euro and in favor of the dollar, and even the recent selloff did not dissuade them from that trade which is now reasserting itself. Stocks will depend on earnings from big names like Exxon, Chevron, Visa and others to see whether the rebound can continue.
A fretful global economy and suddenly volatile markets will form the backdrop for the U.S. Federal Reserve’s latest policy meeting scheduled for Tuesday and Wednesday. There is no press conference and no new individual economic forecasts due from policymakers. But the statement will be parsed for any sign that the Fed is worried trouble in Europe or elsewhere may infect the U.S. recovery. The central bank is likely to end its monthly bond buying, though it will continue to reinvest proceeds as its current holdings mature. But the focus of this session will be the language of the policy released on Wednesday at 2 p.m. ET, and whether it contains any sign the Fed is slowing its timetable for an initial rate increase.
Dow components reporting third-quarter results next week include DuPont and Pfizer Inc on Tuesday. Visa Inc is scheduled to report fourth-quarter results on Wednesday. Energy companies Chevron Corp and Exxon Mobil Corp round out the week with third-quarter results on Friday. World’s No.1 Internet social network Facebook Inc releases third-quarter results after the bell on Tuesday. Mark Zuckerberg has wowed Wall Street by turning his social network into the industry’s most effective mobile advertising platform. But while investors should cheer what’s expected to be another quarter of strong revenue growth, they will also be eager for details about the timeline for making money from the collection of pricy assets that the company has acquired, including Instagram, WhatsApp and virtual reality headset maker Oculus.
The data calendar picks up next week. The U.S. Commerce Department is expected to report on Tuesday that orders for long-lasting manufactured goods increased 0.6 percent in September, while core capital goods orders rose 0.5 percent. Also on Tuesday, the Conference Board is expected to report that its consumer confidence index rose to 87 in October from 86 in September. On Thursday, the Commerce Department’s advance gross domestic product estimate for the third quarter is expected to show the economy expanded at a 3 percent annual pace after growing at a 4.6 percent rate in the second quarter. On Friday, the Commerce Department is expected to report that consumer spending rose 0.1 percent in September after advancing 0.5 percent in August. Also on Friday, the Labor Department is expected to report that its Employment Cost Index increased 0.5 percent in the third quarter after rising 0.7 percent in the second quarter. Swiss bank UBS AG’s third-quarter report on Tuesday comes as it faces several potentially costly probes. UBS is currently asking investors to swap their shares into a new group holding company, a restructuring effort designed to ensure it can be broken up more easily in a crisis. Global investment bank Deutsche Bank AG reports third-quarter results on Wednesday. Investment banking roared back to life in the quarter, but costs for fines and settlements are likely to have hit Germany’s top lender hard. Volume growth at Mastercard Inc, the world’s second-largest payments company, has been decelerating due to a key issuer loss. The company has lost value on investor concerns about international sanctions on Russia and developments in alternative payments including eBay Inc’s decision to spin off its PayPal division. When MasterCard reports third-quarter earnings on Thursday, investors will be looking out for the company’s foreign exchange guidance and cross-border outlook. The company is expected to implement merchant acquiring fee increases in January that could add to its revenue growth and earnings. French drugmaker Sanofi SA is expected to report third-quarter results on Tuesday. Analysts expect the quarter to look good compared to that a year earlier, helped by a recovery in its animal health and vaccines units and by more favorable exchange rates. On the same day, Swiss drugmaker Novartis AG is expected to report a slight rise in third-quarter sales, despite facing full generic competition to its once best-selling blood pressure pill Diovan for the first time. On Thursday, German drugmaker Bayer AG is scheduled to report third-quarter results. Gilead Sciences Inc, the research-based biopharmaceutical company reports third-quarter earnings after the bell on Tuesday. Generic drugmaker Mylan Inc posts results for the third quarter on Thursday. Another U.S. drugmaker AbbVie Inc is scheduled to report on Friday. Time Warner Cable Inc reports third-quarter results before the bell on Thursday. Investors will be looking for any comment regarding the decision of HBO and CBS to go over-the-top and anything new on the pending merger with Comcast. Arizona-based Freeport-McMoran Inc is expected to report lower earnings in the third quarter on Tuesday on the back of weaker copper and gold prices and volumes, the latter due to an export ban in Indonesia. The market’s focus will likely be on the company’s potential to build a smelter in Indonesia as well as the renegotiation of its contract of work in the country. There will likely also be questions on safety at the country’s massive Grasberg mine after four workers died last month in a collision involving a truck. Investors will also likely have questions on future sales of non-core planned by Freeport to reduce its massive $20 billion debt. Newmont Mining Corp, which ended its tax dispute with the Indonesian government last month, is expected to report third-quarter results on Thursday. Barrick Gold Corp, the world’s biggest gold producer, is expected to report lower third-quarter results on Wednesday on a weaker gold price and lower gold production after the sale of some of its higher-cost gold mines. The market’s focus is likely to be on the way forward for Barrick following a number of key executive changes, including the elimination of its chief executive position. There will also likely be questions about Barrick’s assertion that a higher royalty rate in Zambia could threaten the economic viability of its Lumwana copper mine. Canada-based gold miner Agnico Eagle Mines Ltd is expected to report lower third-quarter earnings on Wednesday on the back of weaker gold prices. The market will likely be looking for updated commentary on the outlook for 2015, news on expansions at the Goldex and Kittila mines and any further scope for acquisitions following the purchase of Mexico-focused miner Cayden. On the same day, Yamana Gold Inc reports third-quarter results after the market closes. Miner Goldcorp Inc is scheduled to report third-quarter earnings on Thursday. ConocoPhillips will report third-quarter earnings and update investors on its big investment in growing production from U.S. shale fields, including the Eagle Ford in south Texas, at a time when crude oil prices have fallen more than 20 percent. Starbucks Corp, the world’s biggest coffee chain, posts fourth-quarter results before the bell on Thursday. Wall Street expects Starbucks to report another quarter of red-hot U.S. cafe sales, but are braced for any inkling of a cooling trend. Chipotle, which shares a lot of customers with Starbucks, recently said it expected its gravity-defying restaurant sales growth to come a bit down to earth. Investors will also keep an eye on its performance in China, where sales at KFC and McDonald’s have been hard hit by a meat supplier scandal. National Oilwell Varco Inc, the largest U.S. oilfield equipment provider, is expected to post a higher third-quarter profit on Thursday, buoyed by demand for its land rigs and jack-up rigs, which are used in shallower waters. Investors will look for any outlook on capital spending considering the recent downward spiral of oil prices. French oil company Total SA reports third-quarter results on Wednesday. The impact of the sharp drop in oil prices since June should start hurting, although a drop in the euro could temper that somewhat. Anadarko Petroleum Corp reports third-quarter earnings on Tuesday but Wall Street is most interested in the U.S .oil and gas company’s spending plans for next year following a more than 20 percent slide in crude prices. Health insurers reporting third-quarter results in the week include Aetna Inc on Tuesday, WellPoint Inc on Wednesday and Cigna Corp on Thursday. Aetna and WellPoint are expected to report a higher third-quarter profit, while Cigna’s profit is expected to decline. Western Union Co, the world’s largest money-transfer company, is expected to report a dip in third-quarter profit on Thursday, hurt by higher regulatory costs. The company is facing rising costs as regulators worldwide crack down on money laundering. Western Union, which has ramped up its digital money transfer business, is being investigated by U.S. regulators for misrepresenting the performance of its digital unit. The company has pushed its guidance of $500 million in digital revenue beyond 2015. Western Union has been negatively affected by slowing consumer money transfer growth due to low foreign exchange volatility. Hard-drive maker Western Digital Corp is expected to report first-quarter profit above analysts’ estimates on Tuesday, according to StarMine, helped by higher demand for storage used in servers and data centers. Investors will look out for updates on the company’s full-year outlook. Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc, which operates the Sheraton and Westin chain of hotels, is scheduled to report a better-than-expected profit on Tuesday as U.S. travel rose in the third quarter. Starwood is expected to report higher RevPar as demand for hotel rooms increased. Investors will be looking out for comments on acquisitions and on concerns over Ebola impacting travel. On the same day, Marriott International Inc, which owns the Ritz-Carlton hotel, is expected to post a higher third-quarter revenue and profit. Analysts will look forward to an update on 2015 forecast when hotel occupancy in the U.S. is expected to be at the highest level since 1995, according to a lodging forecast from PwC. Online travel agency Expedia Inc, which gets more than half of its revenue from the United States, is expected to post higher third-quarter revenue and profit on Thursday, driven by higher hotel and flight bookings. Investors will look for an update on how world travel concerns due to Ebola may impact the company in the current quarter. News and information company Thomson Reuters reports third-quarter results on Thursday. Thomson Reuters said net sales for its financial products were positive in the second quarter and analysts and investors will be keen to hear if that is a trend. Additionally, there likely will be questions around new messaging products out in the marketplace that are trying to displace Bloomberg. Kellogg Co, the world’s largest maker of breakfast cereal, cut its full-year adjusted sales and profit forecasts in July as demand for its Corn Flakes and Special K cereals continued to wane in the United States, its biggest market. The company has reported five straight quarters of sales declines in its U.S. cereal business, hurt by the rising popularity of other breakfast items such as yogurt and frozen egg sandwiches. When the company reports third-quarter results on Thursday, investors will look for details on how the company plans to revive its U.S. business and implement its strategy of repositioning its brands to focus on their nutritional value. On Wednesday, Kraft Foods Group Inc reports third-quarter results. Hershey Co, which makes Hershey’s Kisses and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, is likely to report third-quarter profit above analysts’ average expectations on Wednesday, according to StarMine. Investors will be looking for indications on how the price increase has impacted sales, particularly as rival Mondelez International had to cut 2014 sales targets in August after price hikes to cover commodity costs sparked a backlash by consumers and retailers in some European markets. Anheuser-Busch InBev SA, the world’s largest beermaker, reports third-quarter results on Friday. The results are expected to be rather flat after a boost from World Cup in the second quarter. However, declines are likely in Brazil, its second-largest market. U.S. home appliance maker Whirlpool Corp reports its third-quarter results on Tuesday. Offshore driller ENSCO Plc is expected to report a lower third-quarter profit on Thursday, hurt by weak demand, which has in turn led to an oversupply of rigs. Investors will be on the lookout for any efforts to reduce costs and comment on drilling activity and customer response, giving the decline in oil prices. U.S.-based Mosaic Co reports third-quarter results on Thursday after recently curtailing phosphate output due to rising costs. Of interest is any update on how long the curtailment will last and thoughts on timing of a potash supply contract between China’s Sinofert and Canpotex, a company owned by Mosaic and other North American miners. MetLife Inc, the largest U.S. life insurer, is expected to report a rise in third-quarter profit on Wednesday, helped by derivative gains linked to credit spreads. The largest listed U.S. home and auto insurer, Allstate Corp’s estimated pre-tax catastrophe loss for the third quarter is expected to be about $517 million, down significantly from $936 million in the preceding quarter. The company reports results on Wednesday. Chief Executive Thomas Wilson said Allstate’s focus this year would be to attract customers to boost its market share rather than go for “abnormally large” price increases. Discount brokerage firm TD Ameritrade Holding Corp reports its fiscal year-end results and outlook for 2015 on Tuesday. Asset manager Invesco Ltd is scheduled to report third-quarter results on Thursday before market opens. Analysts expect the money manager to earn 63 cents a share, up from 55 cents a share a year ago. Auto parts maker Johnson Controls Inc is likely to benefit from higher demand in its power solutions unit as automakers increasingly look to build more fuel-efficient vehicles. When the company reports fourth-quarter results on Thursday, investors will be looking for comments on its JV with Chinese company Yanfeng Automotive Trim Systems, a move that is expected to create the world’s largest automotive interiors company. Cummins, which makes diesel engines, gas turbines and assorted automotive parts, reports third-quarter results on Tuesday. Coal and natgas producer Consol Energy Inc is expected to post a third-quarter profit on Tuesday compared a year-earlier loss due to heavy tax expenses. However, the company’s revenue is expected to plunge about 28 percent amid weak natural gas and oil prices, and softening demand for thermal coal from the power sector. After a slide in its shares this year, Eaton Corp will try to win back investors when it reports third-quarter results on Wednesday. The manufacturer of power systems and products has faced concerns about its markets and disappointed some investors when it signaled earlier this year that it would not spin off its vehicle business, as some on Wall Street had hoped. Coal miner Arch Coal Inc is expected to report a bigger loss in the third quarter on Tuesday as weak prices for steel-making coal continues to offset cost cuts. The lack of proper rail links to Western U.S. states and a slowdown in the Chinese steel market is also expected to hurt the company’s bottom line. Investors will look out for comments on further production cuts, outlook on recovery of prices for steel-making coal and demand from China. Coach Inc, known for its Poppy handbags, will report first-quarter results on Tuesday amid high expectations as the company begins to see strong demand for its products from international markets. Investors will look for details on the company’s performance in China, where it has seen strong growth in the past, and will also keep an eye out for any updates on the previously announced closure of about 70 stores in North America. Speciality glass maker Corning Inc is expected to report third-quarter earnings in line with the average analysts’ estimate on Tuesday, according to StarMine. Investors will focus on any benefit from strong sales of Apple Inc’s iPhone 6 and 6 Plus, which use Corning’s Gorilla glass and will also look for guidance on opportunities from the auto industry, which analysts say is larger than the LCD market and one that Corning is planning to enter. Akamai Technologies Inc, whose networks help improve the quality and speed of content delivery, is likely to report third-quarter revenue above analysts’ estimates on Wednesday, according to StarMine. Akamai is benefiting from higher consumption of online video and streaming music and the company had forecast current quarter profit and revenue largely above estimates. However, higher spending on sales, marketing and research and development may impact profit as the company is investing more on developing higher margin services to compete with rivals. Network equipment maker F5 Networks Inc is expected to report fourth-quarter results slightly above analysts’ expectations on Wednesday, according to StarMine. F5 Networks has been spared the brunt of the slowdown in telecom spending as they get a large chunk of their revenue from enterprise customers, who are still spending to upgrade networks and guarding data from hackers. Navigation equipment maker Garmin Ltd is expected to report third-quarter results slightly above analysts’ estimate on Wednesday, according to StarMine. Investors will focus on sales of action camera Virb, which failed to resonate with customers after tough competition from GoPro. On Thursday, GoPro is likely to post a better-than-expected third-quarter profit, according to StarMine, helped by strong demand for its wearable cameras used to record outdoor activities and sports. Animation studio DreamWorks Animation SKG Inc is expected to report third-quarter revenue below estimates on Wednesday, according to StarMine. Investors will look for details on an SEC investigation along with expectations for “Penguins of Madagascar” - DreamWorks’ last movie for the year slated for release in November. Shares of Shell Midstream Partners LP, a master limited partnership formed by Royal Dutch Shell Plc, are expected to start trading on the New York Stock Exchange on Wednesday. Shell Midstream Partners said it expected its initial public offering of common units to be priced at $19-$21 per unit, valuing it at up to $1.42 billion. The Houston-based company’s offering of 37.5 million units will raise $787.5 million at the top end of the expected range. Data from Mexico on Thursday will reveal the public sector deficit for September. On Friday the central bank will announce its interest rate decision, after cutting rates to a record low of 3 percent in June to boost sagging growth. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 26 The European Central Bank is due to publish the results of a comprehensive review of the health of Europe’s 130 biggest banks. While the health check is aimed at shoring up confidence and drawing a line under the Euro Zone crisis, the possibility that some banks could be told to raise additional funds to strengthen their capital base has put investors on alert, triggering volatility. MONDAY, OCTOBER 27 The National Association of Realtors is expected to report that its pending home sales index rose 0.5 percent in September after falling 1.0 percent in August (1000/1400). Merck & Co, the No.2 U.S. drugmaker, is expected to report lower third-quarter earnings, hurt by generic competition for its allergy and asthma treatments, but investors will focus mainly on the prospects for the company’s emerging lineup of potentially lucrative immuno-oncology medicines. Twitter Inc reports third-quarter results after the bell. Twitter showed some promise with its last quarterly report card in attracting users, and on advertising growth. But investors remain wary given recent executive departures and few new ideas in terms of both ad formats and user-engagement. T-Mobile US Inc, the United States’ No.4 carrier grew faster than any of its competitors in the third quarter and is expected to report about $7.4 billion in revenue for the period, $300 million more than last quarter. T-Mobile turned around years of subscriber losses last year, when it eliminated customer contracts and pulled the industry into a price war. Analysts expect T-Mobile to have brought in about 950,000 valuable postpaid subscribers, customers who do not pay for service up front, in the quarter.
Amgen Inc is expected to report higher third-quarter profit and revenue on the strength of its rheumatoid arthritis drug Enbrel and contributions from growing newer products. But the world’s largest biotechnology company is likely to withhold further details on its reorganization plans for its big business update presentation scheduled for the following day in New York.
Hard-disk drive maker Seagate Technology Plc is expected to report better-than-expected first-quarter results, according to StarMine, helped by higher sales of notebook and server sales. Precision Drilling Corp, Canada’s largest oil and gas drilling contractor, is expected to report a higher quarterly profit, helped by the shale-fueled drilling boom in North America. The frantic pace of drilling is expected to boost the company’s revenue, unaffected by the sudden slump in crude oil prices. The company stands to gain from a sharp rise in rig rates for onshore drillers as oil producers continue to shift investments toward lucrative shale fields. Investors will be looking for comments on future demand and the company’s capital expenses, after the drop in oil prices. Trade balance data from Mexico will show whether exports continued to fall in September after slipping in August amid stronger imports (0900/1300). (Compiled by Ayesha Sruti Ahmed and Sourav Bose in Bangalore; Editing by Savio D‘Souza)