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Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch

What to watch out for in tomorrow's session

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

1. Jobless Claims, Retail Sales Eyed

Following the Federal Reserve's hawkish tilt Wednesday, investors will likely turn attention to U.S. retail sales and labor market data for further clues the U.S. economy remains solid footing to sustained a faster pace of rate hikes.

Retail sales growth data due 8:30AM ET is forecast to show a 0.4% increase for May, up from a 0.2% rise the prior month. The retail sales control group growth – which has a larger impact on U.S. GDP – is expected to slow to 0.4% from 0.5% the previous month.

The Labor Department releases its weekly count of the number of individuals who filed for unemployment insurance due 08:30 am ET for the week ended May June 8, expected to show jobless claims rose to 223,000 from 222,000 the prior week.

The duo of reports come as the Federal Reserve policymakers on Wednesday appeared to warm up to the idea of a faster pace rate hikes, raising their outlook on the rate hike path for this year and 2019.

The export price index and import price index data due 8:30am ET are also expected garner investor attention.

The dollar retreated Wednesday, pressuring by a rise in the EUR/USD as traders upped their bets the European Central Bank would adopt a more hawkish stance on Thursday, when it is widely expected the central bank will signal an end to its massive bond-buying programme.

2. Natural Gas Inventories, Crude Oil in Focus

Natural gas prices rose sharply on Wednesday a day ahead of data expected to show an increased in natural gas storage.

The Energy Information Agency’s weekly natural gas storage report is expected show gas storage rose by 90 billion cubic feet last week, adding to the above-forecast build seen in the prior week.

Crude oil prices will also remain in focus as investors assess whether the massive drop in U.S. crude supplies will support further gains in oil prices.

Crude futures settled 28 cents higher at $66.64 a barrel.

3. Twenty-First Century Fox Caught Up in Media Merger Frenzy

Comcast Corp (NASDAQ:CMCSA) Wednesday offered $65 billion for Twenty-First Century Fox assets that Walt Disney Company (NYSE:DIS) had already struck a deal to buy, setting the stage for an intense bidding war.

The bid from Comcast arrived a day after U.S. District Court Judge Richard Leon ruled in favor of the AT&T (NYSE:T)'s acquisition of Time Warner, raising the prospect of further merger action in the media space.

Comcast's bid of $35 a share, or $65 billion, represents a 19% premium to Disney's offer for Twenty-First Century units.

Shares of Twenty-First Century Fox Inc A (NASDAQ:FOXA) closed 7.70% at $43.66.

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