(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) Johnson & Johnson is expected to report moderately higher earnings as it kicks off the first-quarter earnings season for large U.S. drugmakers, bolstered by cost cuts and growing sales of its treatments for cancer, arthritis and psoriasis. But investors will want insights from J&J on just how badly its Remicade arthritis treatment will be hurt by Pfizer Inc’s recently approved biosimilar. Goldman Sachs Group Inc is likely to report a decline in first-quarter profit as it continues to battle weak capital markets, trading revenues and investment banking fees amid uncertainty over U.S. interest rates, China’s slowing economy, and low oil prices. Shareholders will look for details on the bank’s exposure to energy loans, outlook on underwriting income and plans to overcome interest rate uncertainty. Intel Corp is expected to report a rise in first-quarter revenue, which will also be above analysts’ estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The world’s largest chipmaker, which will change its reporting structure this quarter, will look to calm investor worries about the slowing pace of growth in its data center business. Intel, which had issued weaker-than-expected guidance for the quarter, has been hurt by a global slowdown in PC sales. Housing starts, as measured by the U.S. Commerce Department, likely slipped in March as single-family home construction retreated from an eight-year high. But an expected rebound in building permits should indicate that the housing market remains on solid ground and a bright spot amid signs economic growth almost stalled in the first quarter. A Reuters survey of economists forecast groundbreaking on new housing projects fell to a seasonally adjusted annual pace of 1.17 million units last month from 1.18 million units in February. Building permits are forecast rising to a 1.20 million-unit pace from 1.18 million in February. (0830/1230) UnitedHealth Group Inc leads the pack of health insurer earnings, and reports first-quarter earnings. With their starting position, UnitedHealth’s report often sets the tone for other insurers and has an impact on shares of Aetna and Anthem. Last fall the company said it might abandon the Obamacare exchanges in 2017. Struggling online search and advertising company Yahoo Inc’s first-quarter profit is likely to drop more than analysts’ estimtes, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The company, which faces stiff competition from Google and Facebook, has been weighed down high payments to partners and websites which send readers to Yahoo’s site. Omnicom Group Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue below analysts’ expectations, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The advertising company, which gets nearly half its revenue from outside the United States, is expected to be hurt by a strong dollar. Investors and analysts will be looking out for Omnicom’s forecast for the second quarter and the full year, as well as details on possible share repurchases. Researchers at the American Association of Cancer Research meeting will present data on Bristol-Myers Squibb Co’s high profile immunotherapy drug Opdivo in head and neck cancer, a potential new use for the drug already helping patients with advanced melanoma and lung cancers. VMware Inc is expected to report first-quarter profit below analysts average estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The software maker in January forecast lower-than-expected 2016 revenue and profit, suggesting its strong growth in new businesses was not enough to compensate for weakness in its traditional server-virtualization software. Investors will be looking for growth in new businesses, such as NSX, which makes networking more efficient. Lawyers for the Federal Trade Commission and Staples Inc square off for final arguments in the fight over whether Staples should be allowed to merge with smaller rival Office Depot Inc. The government says that the deal will hurt competition in the delivery of office supplies for big firms who contract to buy office supplies.
MGM Resorts International is scheduled to price the $975 million initial public offering (IPO) of its carve-out MGM Growth Properties LLC in what will be the biggest IPO of the year. This will be the first of three non-biotechnology IPOs this week, as the market closely watches to see if the IPO window continues to stay open after BATS nudged it open last week, in its $253 million IPO. Fund managers, investors and lawyers meet at the 13D Monitor Active-Passive Investor Summit to talk activist investing as ever more hedge funds are trying to play a bigger role in the companies they manage. Jeffrey Smith whose Starboard Value fund plans to unseat the entire board at Yahoo, including its CEO, will speak as will Ed Garden, chief investment officer at Trian Fund Management, which recently took a big stake in General Electric. Canadian Infrastructure Minister Amarjeet Sohi will speak about the role public-private partnerships will play in the government's C$120 billion 10-year infrastructure plan. Government officials say they are talking to the country's largest pension funds about investing in billions of dollars worth of infrastructure projects to help stimulate the economy. Canadian province Manitoba holds its 41st general election. The long-ruling New Democrat government led by Greg Selinger is expected to lose power in the Western Canadian province known for crop production and manufacturing. The Progressive Conservatives are leading the polls and have said they will reduce provincial sales tax if they come to power. Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz and Senior Deputy Governor Carolyn Wilkins will come before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance. Lawmakers are likely to press them on the strength of the Canadian economy and the appropriate level for the Canadian currency. LIVECHAT-U.S. EARNINGS CHAT with Lipper Alpha Insight's Greg Harrision Greg Harrision takes questions on early reports by U.S. companies for the first quarter as anxious investors puzzle over America's growth prospects. (1100/1500) To join the discussion, click here: bit.ly/1kTxdKD (Compiled by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Editing by Savio D'Souza)