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Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch

Investing.com - Here's a preview of the top 3 things that could rock markets tomorrow.

1. Data Deluge With Retail Sales, Industrial Output, Empire Manufacturing

Spending, Spending, Spending. The domestic consumer's liberal approach to consumption has kept the U.S. economy ahead of its rivals. With the holidays nearing, many will look to the latest retail sales numbers for a check on the health of shoppers.

The Commerce Department will release the numbers at 8:30 AM ET (13:50 GMT).

On average, economists expect that retail sales rose 0.2% last month and that core retail sales, which exclude automobile sales, climbed 0.4%. The retail sales control group – which has a larger impact on U.S. GDP – is expected to have risen 0.3%.

New York manufacturing activity meanwhile is forecast to inch higher to a reading of 5 in November from 4 last month.

U.S. industrial output due at 9:15 AM ET (14:15 GMT), meanwhile, is expected to decline 0.4% as productivity has come under pressure from the ongoing U.S.-China trade battles.

2. Rig Counts on Tap

Baker Hughes releases its weekly installment of drilling activity on Friday, a day after the U.S. Energy Department said crude production rose to a record high of 12.8 million barrels a day for the week ended Nov. 2.

The weekly rig count is an important barometer for the drilling industry and serves as a proxy for oil production and oil services demand.

Data last week showed the number of oil rigs operating in the US fell by 7 to 684. That's also down nearly 23% from a year ago.

Crude futures on Thursday settled 0.6% higher at $56.77 a barrel in the wake of data showing U.S. crude supplies continued to climb, rising 2.2 million barrels last week, above forecasts for a 1.65-million-barrel build.

Sentiment on crude futures has turned more positive in recent sessions after OPEC cut its forecast for overall U.S. oil output owing to a slowdown in shale oil production.

3. China Stocks on Watch as JD.Com Reports

Just a week after rival Alibaba (NYSE:BABA) topped quarterly earnings estimates, JD.Com (NASDAQ:JD) will report third-quarter earnings before markets open.

Its online retail business is expected to lead growth despite a slowdown in China’s e-commerce industry and wider tech sector.

In an attempt to ease the risks of a slowing market, the Chinese e-commerce giant has attempted to diversify beyond online shopping. It has not only branched out into businesses like convenience stores and supermarkets but areas, beyond the mainland.

JD.com is expected to report earnings of 1.21 yuan a share on revenue of 128.45 billion yuan.

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