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The Week Ahead on Wall Street

Economic Data

Today look out for the November Empire State Index, an economic indicator that comes from a monthly survey of manufacturers in the state of New York. Respondents shared in October that business activity expanded slightly, though growth was slower than in September.

Tomorrow the October Import Price Index, October industrial production, October capacity utilization, October business inventories, and the November Home Builders Index are released. Also look for October retail sales, a metric which tracks purchases made at stores, restaurants, and online. In September this metric climbed a seasonally adjusted 1.9% compared to August.

On Wednesday look for October building permits and October housing starts, meaning the number of new residential construction projects that began during the month. In September housing starts were up 1.9%, and permits for future homebuilding rose 5.2%.

On Thursday the October Index of Leading Economic Indicators, October existing home sales, and initial jobless claims will be released. Last week, initial jobless claims hit 709,000, below 757,000 the week prior. This is the fourth consecutive week that the total has fallen, though it is still above the pre-pandemic record of 695,000, set in 1982.

There are no economic reports scheduled for Friday

Earnings Reports

Today, SmileDirectClub (SDC), the Nashville-based company that provides remote teeth straightening services, reports earnings. For customers who would rather not visit an orthodontist in person because of the pandemic, SmileDirectClub has been a useful alternative. The company’s services are also generally cheaper than a traditional orthodontist. Both these factors have given teledentistry brands a boost during the pandemic. For example, Align Technology (ALIGN), a SmileDirect competitor, recently reported a 21% rise in revenue for its most recent quarter.

Tomorrow Home Depot (HD) hands in its report card. Home improvement stores like Lowe’s (LOW), Menards, and Home Depot have seen their sales surge during the pandemic. Consumers have been spending more time at home and working on DIY projects to entertain themselves. Analysts expect that these companies could see record sales this holiday season.

On Wednesday look for a report from Target (TGT). The retailer has made significant adaptations to its stores to help customers shop safely. It offers same-day delivery, contactless pickup, and other options. The company’s sales of kitchenware, home decor products, and video games have been particularly strong recently as consumers continue to spend time at home.

On Thursday Macy’s (M) reports earnings. Macy’s had been struggling to keep up with the shift to online shopping even before the pandemic, and now that trend has been accelerated. However, the retailer secured $4.5 billion in financing over the summer, which will help it stay in business for some time even if the chain sees weak demand this holiday shopping season.

To round out the week, Foot Locker (FL) will report earnings on Friday. The chain operates 3,100 retail stores in 27 countries. Though the company has struggled with store closures, sales of athletic shoes and clothing surged over the summer and early fall as consumers looked for COVID-safe ways to stay in shape, like running.

The Week Ahead at SoFi

Knock, knock—this week’s virtual events are here. From industry insights to entrepreneurship during COVID, there’s something for everyone. Watch on Zoom, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram. Register in the SoFi app!


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