(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)
A slew of Dow 30 companies report results in the week: Chemicals conglomerate DuPont, industrial conglomerate United Technologies Corp and property and casualty insurer Travelers Companies Inc on Tuesday; planemaker Boeing Co, beverage maker Coca-Cola Co and McDonald's Corp on Wednesday; and diversified manufacturer 3M Co, Procter & Gamble and Microsoft Corp on Thursday. While DuPont is expected to report lower first-quarter results, Travelers Companies Inc's first-quarter results are expected to be in line with estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Boeing faces fears of an aircraft downturn after it booked record orders in 2014, while Steve Easterbrook, McDonald's new CEO, is charged with reviving the company's falling sales and managing negative PR around the healthiness of its food. Investors will be watching the impact of the strong dollar on 3M's first-quarter results and Microsoft is expected to report sharply lower profit for its third quarter as sales of personal computers remain soggy.
Search engine giant Google Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue slightly below analysts' estimate on Thursday, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Google, which has been officially charged of cheating consumers and competitors by the European Union, is also being investigated for its Android mobile operating system. Analysts say the latter could prove a bigger threat to Google's future profitability. Analysts expect foreign exchange to negatively impact revenues in the first quarter even as paid click growth is poised to decelerate again.
Facebook Inc is expected to post a first-quarter profit above Wall Street's expectations on Wednesday, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The world's largest social network's business has been booming thanks to its mobile ads on smartphones and tablets. Many investors also expect that video ads will provide the company's next leg of growth. Facebook has also been stepping up efforts to expand products like messaging service WhatsApp and photo-sharing service Instagram. Investors will be looking out for the company's outlook for the remainder of 2015.
On Thursday, the e-commerce company Amazon.com Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue largely in line with analysts' average estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. However, analysts are expecting margins to improve as the company gets a grip on a slew of investments on everything from Hollywood-style television productions to cloud computing and consumer devices.
On Tuesday, Yahoo Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue in line with analysts' estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, as its overall share of U.S. desktop searches declines. Analysts and investors will be looking out for any details on the tax-free sale of its Alibaba shares.
General Motors Co reports first-quarter results before the market opens on Thursday. Analysts are expecting 96 cents per share, up sharply from a year before.
On Wednesday, chipmaker Qualcomm Inc is likely to report second-quarter revenue and profit broadly in line with analysts' average estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Qualcomm lowered its outlook for fiscal 2015 in January, saying it did not expect its newest Snapdragon mobile chip to be used in a major customer's flagship smartphone. Samsung opted for its own mobile processor and modem chip in the Galaxy S6 instead of equivalents from Qualcomm. The chipmaker had also warned that "challenges" with another of its chips had hurt its competitiveness in China. Qualcomm recently came under pressure from hedge fund Jana Partners to spin off its chip business from its patent-licensing business.
Credit Suisse reports earnings for the first three months of 2015 on Tuesday. Meanwhile, on Friday the Swiss bank will ask shareholders to sign off in a symbolic vote on executive pay for 2014, when Credit Suisse became the largest bank in decades to plead guilty to a U.S. criminal charge and will pay more than $2.5 billion in penalties for helping Americans evade taxes.
Investors will focus on existing home sales on Wednesday, which is expected to have increased 3.0 percent to an annual rate of 5.05 million units. Also, data for new home sales is expected to be released on Thursday. On Friday, the U.S. Commerce Department releases data for durable goods.
Starbucks Corp reports its second-quarter results on Thursday. Starbucks is one of the restaurant industry's top performers, but investors and analysts worry that its streak of red-hot growth is coming to an end. The company has a variety of plans in place to boost sales (adding booze, smoothies, more lunch and dinner options, improving and expanding tea selections and testing delivery) and investors will be looking for proof that those are working.
On Tuesday, Yum Brands Inc will report its first-quarter results. Yum's China business remains in the spotlight as it fights to recover from the latest food scandal in its biggest market. Analysts say the company is suffering from "brand fatigue" in China, where competition is mounting and its image has been hurt by food scares that have raised doubts over its supply chain.
Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc is slated to announce results for the first quarter on Tuesday. Chipotle is still having problems finding pork suppliers to replace the one it suspended for running afoul of its animal welfare rules. The company says customers have simply switched to other meats and that it isn't losing sales - but investors will be on alert for any signs of a slowdown.
Drugmaker Biogen Inc is expected to report a higher first-quarter profit on Friday, driven by strong sales of its top-selling oral MS drug, Tecfidera, which has seen burgeoning sales since its launch in 2013. Biogen, which leads the United States multiple sclerosis market with five drugs for the condition, recently reported promising data for its Alzheimer's drug. Investors will also be looking for commentary on Tecfider's growth expectations, and potential for competition, as well as the longer-acting MS injectable Plegridy.
AbbVie Inc, whose planned $21 billion acquisition of Pharmacyclics Inc is meant to lessen the company's dependence on its blockbuster Humira arthritis drug, is expected to report sharply higher earnings and sales for the first quarter on Thursday, fueled by Humira's continuing growth and sales of the company's recently approved Viekira Pak treatment for hepatitis C. Investors will be keen for details on sales prospects for Viekira Pak, given steep price discounts AbbVie has given to compete with Gilead Science Inc's potent treatments for the liver disease.
Eli Lilly and Co is expected to report higher first-quarter earnings on Thursday as the Indianapolis drugmaker begins to recover from patent expirations that slashed demand for its biggest products. The company is well positioned to deliver a promised return to profit growth this year, helped by new treatments for cancer and diabetes and growing sales of its animal health brands.
Abbott Laboratories will report its first-quarter earnings on Wednesday. Recovering sales of Abbott Laboratories' infant formulas, following costly recalls in Asia, and improving performance of the company's branded generic medicines, are expected to drive quarterly earnings growth despite the negative impact of the stronger dollar.
Ebay Inc is expected to report results for the first quarter largely in line with Wall Street expectations on Wednesday. The company has seen strong growth in payments business as well as its non-auction e-commerce business. Analysts expect that the company will continue to benefit from the rise in demand for mobile devices, as consumers increasingly use their smart phones and tablets to shop online. Investors will look for details on the company's plans for the spinoff of PayPal scheduled for the second half of 2015.
On Thursday, Dow Chemical Co is expected to report a lower first-quarter profit due to a stronger dollar and a slowdown in its agricultural business. The company last month said it would offload a bulk of its low-margin bleach and vinyl-related business to Olin in a $5 billion. Investors will be looking for further comments on the company's cost-saving plans.
Johnson Controls Inc, the auto parts supplier and maker of climate control systems for buildings, is expected to report higher second-quarter profit on Thursday, driven by higher sales in its seating and interiors business as auto sales and production rose in the first quarter. The company's buildings efficiency business, which provides air conditioning equipment and building management services, is also expected to report higher revenue as U.S. office vacancy rate declined to its lowest level since the third quarter to 2009. Investors will be looking for comments on Johnson Controls' business focus and outlook following the sale of its workplace solutions business to CBRE Group.
Pentagon's No. 1 arms supplier, Lockheed Martin Corp, reports first-quarter results on Tuesday. Lockheed Martin has been focusing on increasing sales to commercial customers in United States as well as international governments to make up for pressures from tight U.S. defense spending. Lockheed gets 17 percent of its revenue from international markets and 1 percent from U.S. commercial customers. Investors will be looking to see if Lockheed still expects U.S. military spending to meaningfully pick up this year.
Weapons maker Raytheon Co has increased exposure to international markets, which account for about 27 percent of its total sales, as U.S. defense spending remains tight. The maker of the Tomahawk missile and the Patriot missile defense system forecast disappointing 2015 revenue in January as domestic orders remained weak. When the company will report its first-quarter results on Thursday, investors will be looking for an update on a $2 billion order for the Patriot missile defense system that Raytheon expected to win in the first quarter.
On Tuesday, Omnicom Group Inc, the No. 1 U.S. advertising company, is expected to report first-quarter results largely in-line with analysts' average estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Omnicom had warned that a strong dollar would hit revenue this year. Omnicom, whose clients include Apple, McDonald's and Adidas, gets a little less than half of its revenue from outside the United States. On Friday, Interpublic Group of Companies Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue in line with analysts' average estimate according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The company's previous quarter was helped by higher ad spending by businesses in the United States.
On Tuesday, chipmaker Broadcom Corp is expected to report first-quarter revenue in line with analysts' estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Analysts expect the company's connectivity business to sequentially decline as it comes off a strong Apple-driven fourth quarter. Analysts will be looking for the company to provide outlook for the quarter ending June.
On Wednesday, data storage company EMC Corp is expected to report first-quarter profit and revenue below analysts' estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The company had in January forecast a lower-than-expected profit for 2015 and said it would cut jobs. The company, which earns nearly half of its revenue from international markets, is expected to be hurt by a strong dollar. Analysts say enterprise storage demand has been mixed in quarter which may hurt EMC.
Virtualization software maker VMware Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue slightly below analysts' estimate on Tuesday, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, hurt by a stronger dollar. More than 48 percent of VMware's revenue comes from outside the United States. Analysts at Wells Fargo estimate a negative impact of 3-4 percent from foreign currency on license revenue growth.
Programmable chip maker Xilinx Inc will report fourth-quarter results after markets close on Wednesday. The company, which dominates the programmable chip market along with Altera Corp, is expected to report profit and revenue that are largely in line with analyst expectations, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Investors will look for updates on sales to the broadcast, consumer and automotive end market and sales to communications and data center customers.
PulteGroup Inc's first-quarter results are expected to be released on Thursday. Coming on the heels of larger peer D.R. Horton's second-quarter results on Wednesday, PulteGroup's results are expected to provide further evidence of a strong spring selling season this year, suggesting that a slowdown in housing starts in the first three months did not point to underlying weakness in the U.S. housing market.
Steelmaker Nucor Corp will report first-quarter results on Thursday. Nucor has been struggling with lower selling prices due to high levels of imports. Declining oil prices have also led to excess inventory in Nucor's pipe and tube business. Analysts will be looking for comments on inventory, steel demand and overcapacity in its steel mills business.
On Thursday, Patterson-UTI Energy Inc, the second-largest land driller in North America, is expected to report a lower first-quarter profit as weak oil prices weigh on drilling activity. Patterson, which halved its rig construction program for this year, had warned that 2015 would be "challenging," having received indications that customers could terminate a number of longer-term contracts early. Investors will be looking for updates on further cost saving measures and commentary on contracts and dayrates for its 16 new high-tech Apex rigs, which analysts believe could help the driller boost cash margins this year.
Contract driller Nabors Industries Ltd, which is merging with C&J Energy, is expected to report on Tuesday a lower profit in the first quarter as drilling activity continues to be hurt by the fall in oil prices. The company has already warned of weak activity and pricing pressure in its international operations. Investors will be looking for updates on any job cuts and the company's plans to idle rigs in an oversupplied market.
On Tuesday, coal miner Arch Coal Inc is expected to report a ninth straight quarterly loss and on Thursday, coal miner Peabody Energy Corp is expected to report a wider first-quarter loss due to continued weakness in coal prices.
Kimberly-Clark Corp, the maker of Kleenex tissues and Huggies diapers, is expected to report better-than-expected first-quarter sales, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, helped by growing demand in emerging markets such as Brazil, China and South Africa. However, higher input costs and a stronger dollar could have hurt profit. The company said in February it would transfer pension obligations to two insurers to reduce risk and will take a charge in the second quarter. It had also warned of an 8-9 percent drop in 2015 sales hurt by the dollar and weak demand for core products such as Huggies diapers. Investors will be looking for any updates on forecast on Tuesday.
Hershey Co, the maker of Hershey's Kisses and Reese's peanut butter cups, has been struggling with high cocoa and dairy costs and intense competition from rivals such as Mondelez and Mars. To tackle growing competition, the company has been pouring money in advertisements and promotions, but this is expected to hurt its full-year earnings per share by 2 percentage points. It has also tried to diversify and add a new stream of revenue by acquiring jerky maker Krave Pure Foods Inc in January, marking its first foray into meat snacks. When the company will report its first-quarter profit on Thursday, investors will be looking out for comments on whether the company will make more acquisitions in the meat and bakery snacks category, which are becoming more popular than candy, and the effect of the strong dollar on its outlook.
Dunkin' Brands Group Inc will report its first-quarter results on Thursday. Investors will be looking at how much Boston's record snowfall hurt results at Dunkin Brands, whose Dunkin' Donuts shops are concentrated in the U.S. northeast. Experts say the impact could be meaningful.
Under Armour Inc, a sports apparel and footwear maker, is expected to report profit and sales for the first quarter in line with analysts' estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Analysts expect Under Armour to continue its 19-quarter streak of reporting more than 20 percent growth in revenue, helped by expanded offerings in sport and outdoor clothing, strong demand for its Speedform Apollo running shoes, new launches in basketball footwear and sponsorship deals. The company is also expected to benefit from investments in its fast-growing digital platform and from the acquisitions of fitness tracking apps Endomondo and MyFitnessPal. When the company will report on Tuesday, investors will look for an update to the full-year forecast and color on the performance of new launches in footwear.
Hanesbrands Inc, the innerwear and apparel maker is expected to report first-quarter profit and sales above analysts' estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Analysts are projecting first-quarter sales growth of more than 15 percent as the company benefits from higher sales of sport and gym clothing at department stores, and the acquisition of DBApparel and Maidenform Brands. When the company reports on Thursday, investors will look for an update to the full-year forecast and more color on the company's recent acquisition of college logo clothing maker Knights Apparel.
Ingersoll-Rand Plc, the maker of Trane air conditioners and Thermo King refrigeration units, is expected to report a higher first-quarter profit on Thursday, driven by growth in global industrial and construction markets. Investors will be looking for the impact of a strong dollar on the company's industrial business, which has a higher proportion of revenue coming from outside the United States. Investors will also be looking for an update on how much the weakness in oil prices has hurt the company's newly acquired centrifugal compression business.
Xerox Corp, which has been shifting its focus to IT services from making printers and copiers, is expected to report first-quarter revenue that is slightly below analysts' estimate on Friday, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Xerox had cut its profit forecast for 2015 for the second time after reporting its sixth-consecutive drop in revenue last quarter. In December, the company agreed to sell its IT outsourcing arm to Atos.
Teck Resources Ltd, Canada's largest diversified miner, is expected to report on Tuesday a lower profit in the first quarter as prices for both copper and steel-making coal remain depressed amid a fall in demand. The company in March denied media reports that it was in talks to merge with Chilean copper producer Antofagasta. Teck CEO also refuted speculations of a possible merger with HudBay Minerals or an acquisition of Zaldivar, a copper mine owned by Barrick Gold. Teck said in February it might reduce its dividend in July if the industry-wide production cuts fail to boost coal prices. Investors will be interested in any comments of a possible merger or acquisition and demand for steel-making coal.
Car seat maker Lear Corp is expected to report higher first-quarter profit on Friday helped by strong demand in North America and a rise in vehicle production. Some analysts expect Lear to benefit from cheaper commodity prices and report higher margins. Investors will look for Lear's comments on Mercato Capital seeking a split of the auto parts suppliers businesses.
Investment bank and asset manager Lazard Ltd reports first-quarter earnings on Thursday. Lazard is expected to benefit from a jump in corporate dealmaking, which should have boosted its M&A advisory business. Globally, deals worth $811.8 billion were announced in the first quarter, up 21 percent, compared to a year earlier. Among them, Lazard advised on the merger of Heinz-Kraft and the sale of Serbia's state-operated Telekom Srbija. However, analysts expect lower-than-anticipated deal completions to weigh on the company's quarterly revenue. Lazard has been focusing more on asset management to be less reliant on financial advisory fees.
AutoNation Inc, the largest U.S. car dealer chain, reports first-quarter results on Wednesday. Investors will be watching margins on new car sales, any potential expansion moves and for any concerns about U.S. consumer spending going forward.
On Thursday, Qlik Technologies Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue above analysts' estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, on higher demand for its data analytics software. The company had forecast full-year adjusted profit below analysts' average estimate and its revenue forecast was also largely below Wall Street estimates.
Touchscreen chipmaker Synaptics Inc is expected to report third-quarter profit below analysts' estimate on Thursday, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, on weak demand from smartphone makers. Analysts have said that certain Samsung designs that have come out recently are not using Synaptics touch IC products.
Online music streaming service provider Pandora Media Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue above analysts' average estimate on Thursday, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The company is expected to benefit from stronger listening hours and its gradual move into automobiles, where more than half of all radio listening occurs in the U.S. Investors will look for updates on user and local ad growth.
On Wednesday, specialty mattress maker Select Comfort Corp is expected to report first-quarter revenue slightly below analysts' average estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, halting a run of four straight quarters where sales beat expectations. Investors will be looking out for the company's Sleep Number mattress sales as well as for any changes in full-year outlook. The company provided 2015 profit forecast below estimates in February.
On Friday, Apigee Corp, which develops software to manage web applications, is expected to raise up to $92 million in its IPO, valuing the company at about $523.8 million at the higher end of its IPO price range. The company's software platform allows businesses to design and deploy application programming interfaces (API) to link its core IT systems with data used by customers, others. The company primarily offers application interface management and predictive analysis services.
On Tuesday, Canadian Finance Minister Joe Oliver will present the annual federal budget for the fiscal year that began on April 1, the last budget before the general election scheduled for October. He has promised a balanced budget and has pledged to introduce balanced budget legislation as well. The Conservative government has already introduced a package of tax cuts and family benefits, and infrastructure spending, that has soaked up much of the anticipated surplus. A decline in oil prices has cut much of the remaining room for maneuver. Prime Minister Stephen Harper has ruled out major stimulus spending, arguing that despite cheap oil the economy was still growing.
On Thursday Mexico's national statistics office will release economic activity data for February, after the gauge expanded in January on a pickup in services and agriculture while industry sank. Also on Thursday, Mexico will release annual inflation data for the first half of April, after the indicator picked up to 3.14 in March, reaching just above the central bank's 3 percent target. Retail sales data released on Friday will reveal how the gauge fared in February, after it rose at its fastest pace in over a year in January.
Monday, April 20
International Business Machines Corp is expected to report lower revenue for the 12th straight quarter, as it exits unprofitable businesses and attempts to move into cloud-focused areas, away from its traditional hardware and consulting services foundation. Net profit for the first quarter is expected to rise slightly.
Morgan Stanley is expected to report a rise in first-quarter earnings. The company's institutional securities business now depends more on equities trading business, rather than fixed income trading. Rival Goldman Sachs's strong performance in stock trading in the first quarter puts the spotlight on Morgan Stanley. The bank has also been focusing more on its wealth management business. It is trying to squeeze more revenue out of its major businesses by getting wealth clients to use investment banking and trading services. Ruth Porat, Morgan Stanley's chief financial officer, who helped execute a sweeping cost-cutting strategy across several business lines at the bank, will step down to join Google as its finance chief next month.
Halliburton Co is expected to report a lower first-quarter profit, hurt by soft drilling activity. Oil producers have significantly scaled back spending amid weak oil prices. However, cost cuts and continued strength in the Middle East and Asia are expected to help the oilfield services provider minimize the effects of the oil downturn. The company has said it would cut more than 6,000 jobs and investors will seek details about any further cost cuts, especially after Schlumberger cut 11,000 more jobs. Halliburton is looking to complete its $35 billion-acquisition of smaller rival Baker Hughes, which is expected to report its own first-quarter results on Tuesday. Investors will want to know about more potential asset sales after Halliburton said earlier it would sell three businesses to pave the way for regulatory clearance for the deal. Investors will also look to see if the deal will help it better cope with pricing pressure from oil producers.
Royal Caribbean Cruises Ltd, the world's second-largest cruise operator by revenue, is expected to report first-quarter profit and sales below analysts' estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. The company had forecast revenue below expectations, citing a strong dollar and weak pricing in the Caribbean. Investors will be looking out for any changes in full-year forecast and comments on the Caribbean market, as well as updates on expansion in Europe and Asia.
Toymaker Hasbro Inc will report first-quarter results before the bell. The sequels of "Jurassic Park" and "The Avengers" in first half of 2015 and the new "Star Wars" movie in December are expected to boost Hasbro's sales this year and keep it growing at a faster pace than larger rival Mattel Inc's.
LIVE CHAR - FUND VIEW: Socially responsible investment and the equities bull run with Ketan Patel, of Ecclesiastical Investment Management Ketan Patel, of Ecclesiastical Investment Management, joins Global Markets Forum to take a look at ethical and socially responsible investing. Ketan leads the team's company and market research, as well as supporting the fund managers' investment decision-making. Ecclesiastical's largest fund, Ecclesiastical High Income B, with 300 million pounds in assets under management, has gained 8.9 percent in the last year, outperforming the FTSE 100 index, which has risen by 7.7 percent in that time. (0500/0900) To join the Global Markets Forum, click here bit.ly/1kTxdKD (Compiled by Sourav Bose in Bengaluru; Editing by Don Sebastian and Savio D'Souza)