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Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch

Stock MarketsMay 16, 2018 04:08PM ET
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What to watch out for in tomorrow's session - Here’s a preview of the top 3 things that could rock markets tomorrow

1. Jobless Claims, Philly Fed Data, Fed Jawboning Looms

The Labor Department releases its weekly count of the number of individuals who filed for unemployment insurance due 08:30 am ET for the week ended May 11, expected to show jobless claims rose to 215,000 from 211,000 the prior week.

The Philly Fed manufacturing index slated for 8.30 a.m. ET for May is forecast to show a reading of 21.

The Bloomberg Consumer Confidence Index due 9:45AM ET – which measures views on the condition of the U.S. economy, personal finances and the buying climate – will likely also attract attention.

Federal Reserve officials will continue to chime in with speeches that could offer clues on U.S. monetary policy.

Speeches by FOMC Member Kashkari at 10:45AM ET and FOMC Member Robert Kaplan at 1:30PM ET will be closely watched as investor expectations for a faster pace of rate hikes have inched higher following a raft of upbeat U.S. economic reports.

The 10-year treasury yield will continue to be monitored after it hit a fresh nearly seven high on Wednesday.

The dollar eased from a five-month high on Wednesday after the EUR/USD moved off lows.

2. Natural Gas Inventories, Crude Rally in Focus

Natural gas prices fell on Wednesday ahead of data expected to show an increase in natural gas storage for the third week in a row as warmer weather and strong production are expected to have supported inventories.

The Energy Information Agency’s weekly natural gas storage report is expected show gas storage rose by 91 billion cubic feet last week.

Following the rally into settlement on Wednesday, crude oil prices will likely remain in focus after U.S. government data showed US supplies fell more than expected last week.

That was in contrast to the weekly industry report from the American Petroleum Institute on Tuesday showing a build in crude supplies.

Crude futures settled 18 cents higher at $71.49 a barrel.

3. All Eyes on WalMart

Walmart is slated to reveal first-quarter earnings before US markets open Thursday.

Analysts expect the giant retailer to report earnings of $1.12 per share on revenue of $120.49 billion.

Walmart’s e-commerce growth will likely be heavily scrutinise as some analysts have raised concerns that Amazon’s discount on its prime membership may have hurt the retailer’s e-commerce performance.

The company’s e-commerce sales growth dropped to just 23% in the fourth quarter of last year from 50% in the third quarter.

Walmart has stepped up efforts to energise its e-commerce strategy, snapping up a 77% stake in Flipkart, the leading e-commerce site in India.

Shares of Walmart Inc (NYSE:WMT) rose 1.85% to closed at $86.08.

Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch

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