Monday, September 04, 2006

Weekly Look Ahead

The week ahead is very unusual. We face into a holiday-shortened week with only a few items of noteworthy news.

Wednesday's report on second-quarter productivity could be interesting. It's expected to show an upward revision in productivity, and downward pressure on unit labor costs, a good thing for inflation-sensitive investors.

Wednesday also brings the Fed's beige book read on the economy. The periodic survey of the central bank's 12 districts will be used at the next Fed policy meeting, making it relevant. It is unlikely to answer broader questions about the economy and may not be a big market mover.

We are coming off a rally that occurred during slow trading weeks that have been among the historically weakest of the year. If the news (such as it is) doesn’t disappoint the market should continue to monitor the pulse of trading sentiment while being windblown by whatever news comes up. Even the companies reporting profits next week are not big market movers (although HOV might draw some attention).

Monday, September 4th

  • No economic reports today, market closed for holiday.
Tuesday, September 5th

  • No economic reports today!
  • Earnings reports: HAIN, OSIS, DCI, FNSR

Wednesday, September 6th

  • Revised Productivity for Q2 reports at 830am EST. Productivity is expected to be revised upward from 1.1% to around 1.6%. This number is very important for the health of the economy and the market has been relying on productivity to keep wages down while allowing economic growth. If this number disappoints the market will suffer.
  • ISM Services index for August reports at 10am EST. Previous month was 54.8 and Target numbers are around 55. We are moving into an economic phase where services should do well, so this number should be strong.
  • Fed Beige Book released at 2pm EST. This is a book of local data about economic performance in various areas of the country, and usually has interesting information in it.
  • Weekly Crude inventories reports at 10:30am EST.
  • Earnings reports: ESCL, PTMK, CHKE, DLLR, AZPN, HOV, MATK, ABM, FCL, CWST
Thursday, September 7th

  • Initial jobless claims for the week report at 8:30am EST. Previous numbers have been near 315,000. Any indication the market is facing a hard landing (such as dramatically higher jobless claims) will cause a nasty market drop.
  • Wholesale inventories for July report at 10am EST. Expected growth is inline at about 0.8%, same as previous. Higher inventories might indicate buildup of unsold goods.
Friday, September 8th

  • Consumer Credit for July reports at 3pm EST.
All in all one of the slowest weeks in a very long time.
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