NEW YORK, July 22 (Reuters) - Following is the view from editors in the Americas on major news in the week ahead:
* U.S. debt ceiling crisis may deepen, government default looms
* U.S. GDP growth seen expanding by tepid 1.8 percent in Q2
* Bumper week for corporate earnings
* Peruvian President-elect Ollanta Humala inaugurated
* How bad will US spring wheat crop be?
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link.reuters.com/dap72s U.S. DEBT CEILING TALKS INTENSIFY President Barack Obama and the Republican House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner pursue politically complex talks on an agreement to raise the debt ceiling to prevent a U.S. default after the government runs out of money to pay its bill on August 2. The shape of the talks is unclear but the leaders and their aides are expected to work extensively over the weekend and through the week. Obama faces Republican demands that he make trillions of dollars in spending cuts. He insists the cuts be at least partly balanced by more tax revenue from the wealthy. Rating agencies have threatened a U.S. bond downgrade if a comprehensive deficit-cutting deal is not reached. WALL STREET FLUCTUATES ON DEBT TALKS The U.S. debt crisis talks will drive markets once again next week. The stock market hasn't freaked out, yet, but the way headlines have driven short-term action shows stocks are being restrained by the lack of resolution. The dollar is likely to remain under pressure after progress on Europe's debt situation. Oddly, worry about default may drive investors further into Treasuries even if default concerns grow as investors opt for what they consider a traditional safe haven. Treasury will sell 2-, 5- and 7-year debt, and the reception will be watched for signs of concern about the U.S. fiscal situation. U.S. CONSUMERS STRESSED, ECONOMY MUDDLING ALONG U.S. GDP data on Friday will confirm the economy remained mired by slow growth in the second quarter after motor vehicle production was severely disrupted by a shortage of parts from Japan. Economists expect the economy continued to expand at a meager 1.8 percent annual rate. The weak labor market is also expected to have kept a lid on consumer spending. Other data, however, should support the view that growth will pick-up in the second half of the year, but probably not by as much as previously anticipated. Look for a modest gain in new home sales for June and a rise in durable goods orders, even outside the volatile transportation sector. CORPORATE EARNINGS GALORE A slew of earnings this week. On Tuesday, economic bellwethers 3M and UPS will report and Internet retailer Amazon is expected to show market-share gains from bricks and mortar rivals. Colgate-Palmolive on Wednesday will reveal just how well a strong presence in growing emerging markets can mitigate some sluggishness in the United States and Western Europe. Other companies reporting include Exxon Mobil, Dow Chemical, Starbucks, Fedex, WellPoint, Aetna, Express Scripts and Amgen. Rounding out earnings is Boeing, with the world's second biggest plane maker expected to report a decline in profit from a year ago as overhead costs weigh on operating results. AUTOMAKERS, LABOR UNION IN TALKS Automakers and the UAW officially kick off talks for a new 4-year labor agreement. Chrysler starts the process on Monday followed by General Motors on Wednesday and Ford on Friday. It's a far different picture from the last negotiations in 2007 when the automakers were more focused on survival, or 2009 when GM and Chrysler filed for bankruptcy protection. Now, the automakers are profitable and want to remain that way by not giving back too much of what they have gained. Ford and Chrysler report earnings on Tuesday.