April 28, 2015 / 6:29 PM / 2 years ago

What to Watch in the Day Ahead - Wednesday, April 29

(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)

The Federal Open Market Committee ends its two-day meeting on monetary policy. The Fed has already ruled out an April interest rate hike. So not much is expected in terms of policy and guidance. A statement is scheduled for release at 1400 ET (1800 GMT).

MasterCard Inc, the world's No.2 debit and credit card company, is expected to report a fall in first-quarter revenue, hurt by a strong dollar. MasterCard gets about 60 percent of its payment volumes from outside the United States. Analysts expect a decline in U.S. spending activity in the first quarter due to low gas prices to remain a drag on the company's earnings.

The U.S. economy is expected to have braked sharply in the first quarter, hurt by colder-than-usual winter weather and a strong dollar. Economists polled by Reuters expect the government's first snapshot of gross domestic product to show the economy expanded at a 1.0 percent annual rate. A rebound is expected in the second quarter, but it's unclear how strong it will be. (0830/1230) Separately, the National Association of Realtors is expected to report pending home sales rose 1.0 percent in March after rising 3.1 percent in February. (1000/1400)

Media company Time Warner Inc is expected to report first-quarter revenue below the average analyst estimate, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Time Warner had warned that its subscription revenue growth would slow this year due to a strong dollar. The company, however, is expected to report profit above Street estimates, helped by lower costs.

Microsoft Corp will likely announce a date for the release of its Windows 10 operating system at its annual developer conference in San Francisco and update analysts on its outlook for the next year. Industry watchers will be asking if Microsoft has lost touch with the developer base, which is now spending more time designing apps for Google and Apple mobile operating systems.

When Valeant Pharmaceuticals International Inc reports its first-quarter results, investors will be looking for fresh hints on the company's growth plans, even as it digests the $11 billion purchase of Salix Pharmaceuticals. Valeant is trying to work down Salix's bloated inventory by the end of the year, which is likely to cut into revenue.

Two of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's expert committees are slated to review Amgen Inc's melanoma vaccine to decide on whether the drug deserves an accelerated approval. T-vec is being developed as a monotherapy for treating metastatic skin cancer. The company is eyeing an approval for the vaccine outside the United States too. The FDA staff reviewer said on Monday that an accelerated review of the skin cancer immunotherapy could not be considered at this time. The FDA isn't required to follow the opinions of its advisers, but it usually does.

Health insurer Anthem Inc is expected to report a rise in first-quarter earnings, helped by increased memberships. It will be the first public presentation by Anthem's chief executive since the company said in January that it had been hacked, likely by the Chinese, and that records for 80 million people had been accessed. Health insurer Humana Inc is also expected to report higher first-quarter earnings as its private Medicare Advantage and Medicare drug plans added new members and costs steadied for its new individual customers from the Obamacare exchanges.

Northrop Grumman Corp, the maker of Global Hawk surveillance planes, and General Dynamics Corp, the maker of Gulfstream jets, tanks and warships, report first-quarter results before the bell.

Offshore driller Noble Corp Plc's first-quarter profit is expected to fall due to weak demand for rigs, and offshore rig contractor Hercules Offshore Inc is expected to report a quarterly loss as a big slump in oil prices has forced oil and gas companies to cut spending. Investors will look for details on the companies' efforts to reduce costs.

Oil sands developer Cenovus Energy Inc releases its first-quarter results and holds its annual meeting in Calgary. Attention will be on whether the company will make changes to its capital spending plans as oil prices recover from their January lows.

Uranium producer Cameco Corp reports first-quarter results before the markets open. Focus is likely to be on how quickly the Canadian company is ramping up production at the Cigar Lake Saskatchewan mine that it owns with Areva Plc.

Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc, the owner of the Waldorf Astoria hotel brand, is expected to report first-quarter profit below analysts' estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, hurt by a strong dollar and lower inbound travel to the United States. Rival Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide Inc, which is also expected to report first-quarter results before the markets open, forecast in January a fall in profit, citing the strong dollar.

Oreo and Cadbury chocolate maker Mondelez International Inc will report first-quarter results before the markets open. Analysts on average expect the company to beat both sales and profit forecasts, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data. Since its split from Kraft Foods Group Inc in 2012, Mondelez has focused on margin expansion as the company, like others in the food industry, faces sluggish growth in developed markets and volatility in emerging markets.

Tire maker Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co, which gets more than half its sales from outside North America, is expected to report lower revenue for the first quarter, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, hurt by a strong dollar. Investors will look for an update on the company's 2015 forecast and comments on how much lower rubber and oil costs will boost profit in the year.

Diversified U.S. manufacturer Eaton Corp reports its first-quarter results. With the strong dollar sapping sales in the industrial sector, investors want to see how Eaton copes with currency swings.

Spirit AeroSystems Holdings Inc's results are expected to benefit from Boeing Co's decision to boost production of its popular 787 Dreamliner aircraft, for which Spirit makes the fuselage. Spirit, which counts Boeing as its biggest customer, has recently increased exposure to the planemaker by shedding its Gulfstream wings business. Investors will be looking for comment on how much Spirit plans to increase capital expenditure to match Boeing's new production rates.

Garmin Ltd, a maker of GPS-based gadgets, is expected to report first-quarter revenue and profit slightly above average analyst estimates, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, helped by higher sales of its fitness, marine and aviation products. However, Garmin said in February that a stronger dollar would slow revenue growth and the company forecast a full-year profit below market estimates. Investors will also look for comments on concerns of competition from Apple Watch and other wearable products.

Thomson Reuters Corp reports first-quarter results. The company is expected to update investors on efforts to turn around the division that caters to banks and other financial institutions.

Consumer review website operator Yelp Inc is expected to report first-quarter profit below analysts' expectations, according to Thomson Reuters StarMine data, as the company spends more to expand in markets outside the United States. Yelp raised its first-quarter revenue forecast after it acquired online food-ordering service Eat24 in February.

Producer prices data from Statistics Canada is expected to show prices dropped by 0.1 percent in March, after rising 1.8 percent in February. (0830/1230)

LIVE CHAT: Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets, looks at where markets are headed in the world of lower rates and abundant liquidity Michael McCarthy, chief market strategist at CMC Markets, joins us from Sydney at 1430 Sydney time (0030 ET/0430 GMT), to share his thoughts on the markets as we wonder how long such low rates and pouring liquidity from central banks can support high valuations in some markets. To join the conversation, click here bit.ly/1kTxdKD

Compiled by Ayesha Sruti Ahmed in Bengaluru; Editing by Kirti Pandey

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