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The Week Ahead On Wall Street

Economic Data

Today, new home sales for June are released by the Commerce Department. This data point measures the number of newly constructed homes which were purchased in the month. For May new home sales fell 5.9%, hitting a one-year low amid rising home prices thanks to rising construction costs.

Tomorrow, durable goods for June are released. This tracks the sale of big-ticket items manufactured in the US. In May durable goods increased 2.3% driven by demand for commercial aircraft. Investors will be paying close attention to see if orders continued to grow in June or if the recovery is starting to slow. The Consumer Confidence Index for July is also released.

On Wednesday, the Federal Reserve publishes the minutes from its Federal Open Market Committee meeting for July. With inflation continuing to rise and with the Delta variant spreading throughout the country, investors will be parsing the Fed’s commentary to see what it means for inflation and monetary policy.

On Thursday, initial and existing unemployment claims for the previous week are released by the Labor Department. The number of Americans filing first-time unemployment claims increased last week. Additionally, there are fears the Delta variant will result in more restrictions and shutdowns, pushing the number higher. The number of new claims last week was 419,000, up from 368,000 in the week earlier.

Finally, on Friday look for consumer spending numbers for June. This tracks the value of goods and services purchased by consumers in a given month. For May consumer spending activity was unchanged from April. Inflation and rising consumer prices is an issue, which may impact June’s reading. Personal income and core inflation for June are also released Friday.


Today, Lockheed Martin (LMT) reports quarterly earnings. The defense contractor is facing opposition to its $4.4 billion deal to buy Aerojet Rocketdyne (AJRD), a maker of rocket motors. US Senator Elizabeth Warren called for the FTC to apply more scrutiny to mergers in the defense industry, including Lockheed’s deal. The senator is worried Lockheed will gain an unfair competitive edge once the transaction is complete. With the deal Lockheed controls the engines used in most US missiles. Investors will be looking for an update on the transaction when Lockheed reports.

Tomorrow, be on the lookout for quarterly earnings from United Parcel Service (UPS). The delivery company has seen unprecedented demand since the onset of the pandemic, with people working and staying home. Even with the economy reopening, concerns about the Delta variant are raising the chances of more restrictions, which may impact demand for UPS services. Investors will be paying close attention to what UPS has to say about demand, the Delta variant’s impact on its business, and how it is luring workers its way.

On Wednesday, Pfizer (PFE) reports quarterly earnings. The drugmaker has benefited from its COVID-19 vaccine which recently was proven to be effective against the new Delta variant. Pfizer and vaccine partner BioNTech (BNTX) also inked a deal with a South African pharmaceutical company to manufacture their vaccine in South Africa. The move is expected to greatly enhance the availability of the vaccine across Africa in 2022. Investors will be looking for an update on those efforts as well as how sales are tracking at one of the country’s largest drug makers.

On Friday, Procter & Gamble (PG) reports quarterly earnings. The consumer products company posted earnings surprises for two quarters in a row and investors will be paying close attention to see if it can get a third under its belt. The company is seeing huge demand, but rising costs and supply chain issues are making manufacturing more expensive. As a result, P&G and other companies are raising the prices they charge customers. It will be interesting to hear what P&G has to say about the supply chain, demand, and the cost of materials when it reports earnings Friday.

The Week Ahead at SoFi

This week’s topics: all about student loan refi, how to go back to work after you’ve had a baby, and Your Next Dollar—LinkedIn, Twitter, and Zoom live. Register to these events and more in the SoFi app!


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ABOUT Meg Richardson Meg Richardson is a writer specializing in markets, technology, and personal finance. She loves breaking down seemingly complex ideas and making them readable and interesting for everyone. She holds an MFA in writing from Columbia University. When she is not writing about finance, she enjoys running in Central Park and drawing cartoons.

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