U.S. and global stock futures were lower at 9 AM this morning in the pre-market due to swine flu worries.
Hi there, I’m ANGELA SALVUCCI, with the “Week Ahead Market Report” for April 27, 2009.
Earnings season continues strong this week with about 30 percent of the S&P 500 index reporting. The economic release calendar is also very busy.
On Tuesday, The Fed will begin a 2-day meeting to consider the state of the economy. They are expected to release a statement on Wednesday at about 2:15 Eastern Standard Time. No change in interest rates is expected. The statement will be analyzed to determine whether the Fed believes the economy has bottomed. Bond traders will also be on the lookout for surprises regarding the Fed's strategy of expanding its balance sheet.
The swine flu has already claimed 103 deaths in Mexico. In the U.S., a public health emergency was declared as 20 cases in five states are confirmed. Airline, hotel, and cruise stocks are down in early premarket trading on fears the flu threat could curtail international travel.
Vaccine oriented biotechs are up in pre-market on news of the swine flu outbreak including Novavax (NASDAQ:NVAX), BioCryst Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:BCRX), Astra Zeneca (NYSE:AZN), and Glaxo-Smithkline (NYSE:GSK).
On Tuesday, the consumer confidence index will be released by the Conference Board as well as the Case Shiller housing price index for February.
First-quarter GDP will be released on Wednesday. The consensus estimate is girding for a contraction of 4.9 percent after a bruising 6.3 percent in the fourth-quarter.
Wednesday will also see weekly crude inventories data. A strong build-up in inventories is expected on top of already high levels.
On Thursday, March personal income and spending data and weekly initial jobless claims will be released by the Federal government.
The week will end in a flurry of economic releases with the April ISM manufacturing index, the University of Michigan consumer confidence revisions for April, March factory orders, and April auto sales all being released on Friday.
Earnings season remains in full swing with nearly one-quarter of companies on the S&P 500 index reporting this week.
Companies reporting this week include Dow Jones components Chevron (NYSE:CVX), Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), Pfizer (NYSE:PFE), and Proctor & Gamble (NYSE:PG).
Humana (NYSE:HUM) posted first quarter earnings of $1.22 per share in today’s premarket, 4 cents more than the consensus forecast of $1.18 per share.
Whirlpool (NYSE:WHR) also reported in the pre-market, generating first quarter earnings of 91 cents per share.
Verizon (NYSE:VZ) topped consensus estimates of 59 cents per share this morning, posting adjusted first quarter earnings of 63 cents per share.
I’m ANGELA SALVUCCI and this is the “Week Ahead Market Report” for April 27, 2009. We’ll be back with you on Friday for the “Weekly Market Wrap.” Thank you for joining us today.
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