US Market Ahead: Riding the Economic Wave with Price Index, Consumer Sentiment, Business Activity and Exciting Earnings

March 25, 2024

The United States stands as a key player whose economic indicators significantly influence international markets. In the week ahead, several pivotal economic events are slated for release, serving as crucial barometers of the US economy’s health and resilience.

On the expected US earnings calendar, this week’s lineup includes Buzzfeed Inc, GameStop Corp and McCormick & Company Inc, each offering valuable insights into the health and performance of the respective industries.

Economic Data to Watch:

  1. Price Index and Inflation: On Thursday, the GDP Price Index, which measures price changes of all goods and services in the GDP, indicating inflation, and the GDP Annualized Quarter on Quarter (QoQ), which estimates quarterly GDP growth on an annualized basis, showing the pace of economic expansion or contraction over three months, will be released. The Core Personal Consumption Expenditures (PCE) Price Index, broadcasting on Friday, measures changes in consumer prices and provides insights into inflationary pressures, impacting monetary policy decisions and purchasing power.
  1. Manufacturing and Business Activity: The Tuesday Durable Goods Orders for the month of February will include figures for durables excluding transportation and capital goods orders, providing valuable insights into consumer and business spending patterns.
  2. Housing Market: The FHFA House Price Index, releasing on Tuesday, tracks changes in home prices, providing insights into the health of the housing market and consumer wealth. Additionally, the Pending Home Sales for month-on-month (MoM) and year-on-year (YoY) help forecast future home sales.
  3. Consumer Sentiment and Spending: The Consumer Confidence Index, coming out on Tuesday, measures consumer optimism and is crucial for understanding consumer spending decisions and overall economic growth. Besides that, the Personal Income data will indicate consumers’ purchasing power and their ability to spend, while the Personal Spending data will indicate consumer consumption patterns. Both data will be made official on Friday.
  4. Labor Market: The Initial Jobless Claims on Thursday will gauge the health of the labor market, with lower claims indicating stronger job market conditions.

Key Earnings Reports:

  1. Technology and Media: Buzzfeed Inc (NASDAQ: BZFD), releasing its 4QFY2023 earnings on Monday, will provide insights into the digital media sector, while Ouster, Inc (NYSE: OUST) latest earnings will shed light on the performance of the emerging lidar technology industry, crucial for autonomous vehicles and other applications.
  2. Gaming and Entertainment: Both Flutter Entertainment PLC (NYSE: FLUT) and GameStop Corp (NYSE: GME) 4QFY2023 earnings reports on Tuesday will be closely watched by investors interested in the sector. These reports will offer insights into consumer trends, particularly in the gaming and online betting industries.
  3. Food and Consumer Goods: McCormick & Company Inc’s (NYSE: MKC) 1QFY2024 earnings report on Tuesday will provide valuable information on the performance of the food industry, offering insights into consumer preferences and spending patterns, especially in the context of ongoing supply chain challenges.
  4. Services and Hospitality: Latest earnings reports from Cintas Corp (NASDAQ: CTAS), Paychex Inc (NASDAQ: PAYX), and Carnival Corp (NYSE: CCL) will offer crucial insights that help investors assess the recovery trajectory of these industries post-pandemic, particularly considering changing consumer behavior and travel trends.
  5. Financial Services: Jefferies Financial Group Inc’s (NYSE: JEF) 4QFY2023 report will offer valuable information on investment banking, trading, and asset management activities.
  6. Healthcare and Retail: Walgreens Boots Alliance, Inc’s (NASDAQ: WBA) 2QFY2024 earnings report will offer insights into consumer healthcare spending and retail pharmacy trends, as well as the company’s ongoing digital transformation efforts.

Amidst a backdrop of geopolitical tensions and economic uncertainties, investors, policymakers, and analysts digesting the findings of the key economic data and key earnings releases to ponder the implications for financial markets and global economic outlooks are sure to be profound.

Nevertheless, it remains paramount to carefully monitor these indicators for informed decision-making in an ever-evolving economic landscape.

Disclaimer: ProsperUs Manager of Content Hailey Chung doesn’t own shares of any companies mentioned.

Hailey Chung

As a lifelong learner, Hailey strives to simplify finance for everyday investors, making it relatable and enjoyable. She desires to support investors with various background, whether they are grappling with limited time and resources in seeking financial freedom or are sincere in stewarding their money well as a token of gratitude for God's provision. With a focus on responsible investing, Hailey balances caution and opportunity, believing life's too short to stress over market fluctuations. Beyond the pursuit of profits, she advocates for investments aligned with building a better world. As Manager of Content at ProsperUs, she leverages her journalism background from The Edge Malaysia, where she honed her skills at the capital and corporate desk.

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