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Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch for Dec. 31

1. Consumer Confidence Leads the Day

Much to the surprise of many every year, Wall Street trades for a full day on New Year’s Eve as it wraps up the annual numbers.

There will also be economic data that has to be squeezed in between the market and federal holidays of the festive season.

At 10:00 AM ET the Conference Board will release its measure of December consumer confidence.

The consumer confidence index is expected to rise to 128.2 for the month from 125.5 in November, according to analysts’ forecasts compiled by Investing.com.

The index has missed expectations the past two months.

2. Housing Prices on Tap

Housing figures will also come in just before the start of trading.

The S&P Case-Shiller Housing Price Index will be reported at 9:00 AM ET. The measure is pretty backward-looking, though, with the latest numbers coming in for October.

The index is expected to have risen to a year-on-year rate of 2.2%, just a tick higher than September.

3. API Ends the Year for Oil Data

Oil prices drifted lower today, which is not surprising after such a strong December rally.

After trading tomorrow there will be one last batch of data when the American Petroleum Institute releases its snapshot of U.S. oil inventories.

API’s numbers are often at a sharp digression to the official government numbers, but still move futures.

The API reports at 4:30 PM ET. The inventories showed a surprise drop of 7.9 million barrels for the week before.

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