US retail profits to reveal state of the economy - The week ahead on Wall St

ANALYSTS will get another glimpse at the US economy’s vital signs next week, as they sift through housing reports and a steady stream of key retail earnings announcements.

The US Federal Reserve is scheduled to release its latest minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee’s (FOMC) meeting on 28-29 October.

Investors will be eyeing the report to see whether the FOMC hinted at when the central bank will begin raising interest rates, which are at historic lows. Most economists expect to see a hike in rates in the middle of next year.

Target and consumer electronics retailer Best Buy are due to post quarterly results. So far, this earnings season, retailers have painted a mixed picture of the coming holiday shopping season, traditionally the strongest quarter for the US economy.

Today sees reports from Urban Outfitters, JD.com and Tyson Foods.

Manchester United are due to present their results tomorrow.

On Wednesday, Staples and L Brands report, while on Thursday it’s the turn of Buckle, Dollar Tree, Gamestop, Gap and Ross Stores.

The housing sector will also be a major focus this week, with a slew of data points, along with quarterly earnings from Home Depot and Lowe’s, the world’s top two home improvement retailers.

Foot Locker finish the week with its report on Friday.