December Rate Hike, Micron Earnings on Tap

Blue chips Walgreens Boots Alliance and Nike will reveal quarterly earnings

by Lillian Currens

Published on Dec 13, 2018 at 1:33 PM
Updated on Dec 13, 2018 at 1:33 PM

Next week, the highly anticipated December Fed meeting will make headlines, with the central bank widely expected to boost rates again. Traders will undoubtedly dissect the Fed's policy statement and the post-meeting press conference with Fed Chair Jerome Powell for clues to the future pace of rate hikes. In addition, Wall Street will weigh the latest gross domestic product (GDP) data, and keep an eye on Washington, D.C., after President Donald Trump recently threatened a partial government shutdown over the proposed border wall with Mexico.  Plus, blue chips Nike (NKE) and Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) will lead the train of earnings trickling in, with BlackBerry (BB), FedEx (FDX), and Micron Technology (MU) also set to report. 

Below is a brief list of some key market events scheduled for the upcoming week. All earnings dates listed below are tentative and subject to change. Please check with each company's respective website for official reporting dates. 

A quiet Monday, Dec. 17, will start the busy week with the Empire State manufacturing survey, the housing market index, and Treasury International Capital (TIC) data. Red Hat (RHT) and Steelcase (SCS) report earnings.

The two-day Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) meeting starts Tuesday, Dec. 18, and traders will digest housing starts. Earnings reports are expected from FedEx (FDX), Micron Technology (MU), Darden Restaurants (DRI), and Navistar (NAV). 

Wednesday, Dec. 19, will bring the much anticipated FOMC policy statement, in which the Fed is expected to hike interest rates for the final time this year. Traders can also look forward to the Fed forecast, as well as comments from Fed Chair Jerome Powell during the afternoon press conference. 

Traders will see data on existing home sales and the Energy Information Administration's (EIA) weekly crude inventories report. Cintas (CTAS), General Mills (GIS), Paychex (PAYX), and Winnebago (WGO) will all enter the earnings confessional.

It will be an active Thursday, Dec. 20, with blue chips Nike (NKE) and Walgreens Boots Alliance (WBA) throwing their hats into the earnings ring, as well as Accenture (ACN), BlackBerry (BB), Conagra (CAG), and Sanderson Farms (SAFM). The Fed balance sheet, weekly jobless claims, and Philadelphia Fed business outlook survey are also slated for Thursday. 

Data on durable goods, personal income and outlays, and consumer sentiment will all roll out on quadruple-witching Friday, Dec. 21, as well as the latest reading on third-quarter GDP. There are no earnings of note scheduled. On Capitol Hill, meanwhile, the federal government could face a partial shutdown at midnight, if a budget deal can't be reached.


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