What to Watch in the Day Ahead - Thursday, Aug. 13
(The Day Ahead is an email and PDF publication that includes the day's major stories and events, analyses and other features. To receive The Day Ahead, Eikon users can register at . Thomson One users can register at RT/DAY/US. All times in ET/GMT) A surge in demand for automobiles likely buoyed U.S. retail sales in July, which could offer fresh evidence that economic growth got off to a solid start in the third quarter and strengthen expectations of an interest rate hike in September. The reading is likely to show an increase of 0.5 percent in July, compared to a 0.3 percent drop in the previous month. Meanwhile, the Labor Department releases July import and export prices. Also, the number of Americans filing new applications for unemployment benefits is expected to have steadied at 270,000, last week. (0830/1230) Separately, Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City issues Labor Market Conditions Indicator for July. Chip-equipment maker Applied Materials Inc is expected to report a third-quarter profit below analysts' average estimate. Analysts expect the company's foundry business to be hurt due to lower spending by chipmakers. Department store operator Kohl's Corp posts its second-quarter results. The company could lower its full-year forecast, analysts warn, after first-quarter sales and profit were hurt by colder-than-usual weather in February and West Coast port issues. Investors will look for comments on back-to-school sales, and whether its efforts to integrate online and in-store shopping are translating into higher sales. Perfume maker Coty Inc made news in July, entering an agreement with Procter & Gamble to buy 43 brands including Wella and Clairol for $12.5 billion. A senior executive said last quarter Coty's celebrity perfume business was a dying phenomena. The company's fourth-quarter revenue is expected to miss estimates. Investors will look out for comments on the recent acquisition and forecasts. King Digital Entertainment Plc is expected to report a second-quarter profit below estimates. The "Candy Crush Saga" creator is likely to have been hurt by a strong dollar. King has also struggled to boost its bookings due to a lack of new releases. Investors will look for commentary around new titles scheduled to be launched in the second half of the year. El Pollo LoCo Holdings Inc is expected to report a second-quarter profit below analysts' average estimates. The restaurant chain operator reported weak comparable sales and recorded the slowest growth in customer traffic since its debut, in the first quarter, hurt by intense competition. Investors will be looking if the weakness in comparable sales carried on in the second quarter and if the company will cut its full-year forecast. Canada's new home prices are forecast to have increased by 0.1 percent in June from a month earlier. (0830/1230) Separately, Statistics Canada releases an inaugural Job Vacancy and Wage Survey for the first quarter of 2015. Canadian oil producer Crescent Point Energy Corp is expected to report a fall in second-quarter profit, due to weak crude prices. The company bought smaller rival Legacy Oil for C$1.53 billion in June, even though hedge fund and activist shareholder FrontFour Capital opposed the deal. Crescent Point is now set to acquire privately held light oil producer Coral Hill Energy Ltd, which operates in Alberta. Investors will look for comments on the company's production forecast. They will also look for details on the company's capital budget. Boutique investment bank Houlihan Lokey Inc makes it market debut with a likely valuation of $1.5 billion. The IPO is expected to raise about $300 million at the mid-point of its price range of $22-$24 per share. The offering comes nearly a year after rival Moelis & Co's listing on the NYSE. Houlihan Lokey was a bankruptcy adviser to companies such as Enron Corp, Lehman Brothers Holdings Inc, General Motors Co and Washington Mutual Inc. Founded in 1972, the Los Angeles-based firm had about 900 employees, with more than 125 managing directors. It had 193 clients, who paid $1 million or more in fees for the fiscal year ended March 31. Corporate financing is the company's biggest business, accounting for more than half of its $680 million annual revenue. Mexico's central bank releases minutes of its July decision to hold borrowing costs at a record low of 3 percent, and may hint at when it could begin hiking interest rates. Separately, Chile is expected to keep the interest rate at 3.0 percent on competing concerns over a weak economy and persistently high inflation. LIVECHAT: FX Outlook - Dennis De Jong, managing director, UFX Markets Find out what's in store for the major currency pairs for the rest of the summer and beyond, with Dennis De Jong, managing director at UFX Markets at (0500/0900). To join the Global Markets Forum, click here bit.ly/1kTxdKD (All analysts' estimates are according to Thomson Reuters StarMine, unless mentioned otherwise) (Compiled by Hardik Vyas in Bengaluru; Edited by Don Sebastian)
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