Wall Street’s Week Ahead: A Federal Reserve Meeting and Starbucks Earnings

Looking at the week ahead, market watchers will have a slew of economic and earnings reports vying for their attention.

Economic Reports

The Federal Open Market Committee’s two-day meeting beginning on Tuesday will be the week’s headliner with Wednesday’s statement and Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke’s press conference grabbing all the attention. A major policy decision is not expected by analysts after September’s Operation Twist and this week’s positive U.S. growth report but an updated U.S. growth forecast will be included in Wednesday’s conversation.

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The week’s economic numbers kick off with Monday’s Chicago Purchasing Manfacturer’s Index. October manufacturing numbers are slated to show an expansion for the 26th consecutive month, according to Moody’s Analytics economists.

Tuesday will bring the key manufacturing number, the ISM Manufacturing Index, coupled with October auto sales and September construction spending.

Wednesday’s impending Federal Reserve press conference will overshadow October’s ADP payrolls report.

Investors will get a day chock-full of activity on Thursday with retail same-store sales numbers, remarks from Atlanta Fed President Dennis Lockhart, weekly jobless claims, third-quarter productivity, the ECB interest-rate decision, October’s ISM non-manufacturing index, and the opening of the Cannes G20 summit.

The week will end with Friday’s long-awaited October unemployment report. MarketWatch analysts forecast a stagnant 9 percent rate with less than 100,000 jobs created during October.

Earnings Reports

Adding to the week’s market activity is more earnings reports. This week will have a bevy of food and retail company reports, which will give a preliminary snapshot of the upcoming holiday shopping season.

Look for reports from Whole Foods Market Inc.(NASDAQ:WFM), Kraft Foods Inc. (NYSE:KFT) and Starbucks Corp. (NASDAQ:SBUX). Other big names will include Comcast Corp. (NASDAQ:CMCSA) and Prudential Financial Inc. (NYSE:PRU).

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