May 20, 2015 / 7:04 PM / 3 years ago

What to Watch in the Day Ahead - Thursday, May 21

(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)

New applications for unemployment insurance likely picked up last week, but remained at levels consistent with a labor market that is generally improving. Analysts expect the U.S. Labor Department to report that jobless claims rose to 271,000 last week from 264,000 the preceding week when they hit their lowest levels in nearly 15 years. (0830/1230) The National Association of Realtors releases data on sales of used homes in April. Analysts polled by Thomson Reuters forecast existing home sales rose last month. (1000/1400) Also, financial data firm Markit releases its preliminary U.S. Manufacturing Purchasing Managers’ Index for May. (0945/1345)

Hewlett-Packard Co, the world’s No. 2 PC maker, is expected to report second-quarter revenue of $25.63 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. HP, which took about two-thirds of its revenue from outside the United States in the year ended October, had warned of a stronger dollar weighing down on its results. The company, which has struggled to adapt to the new era of mobile and online computing, is preparing to split into two listed companies this year, separating its computer and printer businesses from its faster-growing corporate hardware and services operations.

Apparel retailer Gap Inc is expected to report a fall in first-quarter profit, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S. Gap has reported a fall in first-quarter revenue and comparable sales, mainly due to falling sales at its Gap and Banana Republic brands, a stronger dollar, and supply disruptions at West Coast ports. Gap has been focusing on its biggest brand, Old Navy, which has clothes aimed at younger customers. Investors will look for updates on efforts to revive sales at the Gap brand and a second-quarter forecast.

Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco President John Williams participates in the “Policy Panel on the Impact of Reform in Practice” before the Central Bank Governance and Oversight Reform conference hosted by the Hoover Institution at Stanford University. (1900/2300) Federal Reserve Vice Chair Stanley Fischer speaks on “Past, Present and Future Challenges for the Euro Area” before the ECB Forum on Central Banking, in Linho Sintra, Portugal.

Struggling teen apparel retailer Aeropostale Inc is expected to report first-quarter results above the average analyst estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine. Aeropostale has been controlling inventory and chasing trends to improve sales, but weak demand for its core offerings and delays in shipments of spring and summer merchandise are expected to hurt the company’s sales. Analysts say the retailer’s fashion assortment is more or less in line with current trends, but do not expect Aeropostale to return to growth before the back-to-school shopping season. Investors will look for the second-quarter forecast, details on the turnaround and comments on the industry.

China’s Baozun Inc, in which Alibaba owns a sizable stake, is expected to raise about $129 million, valuing the e-commerce services company at about $632 million. The company, which says it has a fifth of China’s e-commerce solutions market, intends to reinvest most of the initial public offering proceeds in its marketing and R&D operations, but has also hinted at plans to make acquisitions.

Canadian e-commerce software maker Shopify is expected to raise as much as $108 million in its IPO, valuing the company at about $1 billion. The Ottawa-based company plans to list in both Canada and the United States. Shopify, whose platform is used by General Electric and Tesla Motors among others, said 162,261 merchants had subscribed to its platform from about 150 countries. The company’s investors include venture capital firm Bessemer Venture Partners, FirstMark Capital, OMERS Ventures and Canadian investment company Klister Credit.

Mexico’s gross domestic product data will be released for the first quarter of 2015, after growth notched 0.7 percent in the fourth quarter. (0900/1300) Economic activity data for March is also scheduled for release after the seasonally adjusted figure was flat in February as farming output contracted and industry ticked up slightly. (0900/1300)

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Compiled by Ayesha Sruti Ahmed in Bengaluru; Editing by Don Sebastian

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