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Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch

Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch

Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch
Stock Market
Wednesday, March 20, 2019 - 22:15

Investing.com - Here’s a preview of the top 3 things that could rock markets tomorrow.

1. Nike Profit Seen Rising

The big earnings report on Thursday comes after the close when the athletic shoe, apparel and equipment maker Nike (NYSE:NKE) reports fiscal third-quarter earnings.

Nike is expected to report 64 cents a share in earnings for the quarter, down from 68 cents a year ago, according to analysts polled by Investing.com. Revenue for the Dow component is expected at $9.58 billion, up 6.7% from a year ago. The stock, up more than 16% this year, has been the sixth-best Dow performer.

Darden Restaurants (NYSE:DRI) weighs in before the open. The operator of Olive Garden, Longhorn Steakhouse and other chains is expected to report fiscal third-quarter earnings of $1.74 a share. Revenue is projected at $2.24 billion, up from $2.13 billion a year ago.

Also before the bell, ConAgra Foods (NYSE:CAG) reports. The food company is expected to report fiscal third-quarter earnings of 49 cents a share, down from 61 cents a year ago. Revenue is projected at $2.77 billion, up from $1.99 billion a year ago.

And Cintas (NASDAQ:CTAS), one of the biggest vendors of uniforms for businesses, issues numbers after the close. The company is expected to report $1.72 a share in profit on revenue of $1.69 billion.

2. Jobless Claims, Philly Fed on Tap

With the Federal Reserve’s decision in the rearview mirror, economic attention will turn to the labor market and manufacturing.

The Labor Department will issue weekly initial jobless claims at 8:30 AM ET (12:30 GMT).

Economists forecast that claims for first-time unemployment benefits ticked down to 226,000 in the latest week.

At the same time, the Philadelphia Federal Reserve will report on manufacturing activity in its area for March.

The Philly Fed Index is expected to come in at 4.6 for the month.

3. Natural Gas Inventories in Focus

Natural gas futures will be in spotlight tomorrow when the Energy Information Administration is expected to report gas storage fell by 48 billion cubic feet last week.

April futures fell 1.43% to $2.833 on Wednesday amid a weather update for March 19 to March 25 from NatGasWeather forecasting a shift toward milder temperatures.

"Overall, a messy pattern this week with a mix of weather systems with showers and cooling impacting most U.S. regions, but with mild breaks between," the update said.

Natural Gas futures have racked up gains of about 8% over the past year and some expect the advance to continue, supported by a global shift away from coal towards gas, a cleaner non-renewable energy.

© Reuters.

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