Friday, April 26, 2019
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WHAT TO WATCH
Economists are looking forward to a solid first-quarter GDP print after several key sectors of the U.S. economy took a last-ditch turn higher at the close of the quarter.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis will release its initial read of U.S. economic growth during the first three months of the year Friday at 8:30 a.m. ET.
Over the past several weeks, analysts have been upwardly revising their expectations for economic expansion during the period amid better-than-expected data on segments including retail sales, exports and business inventories.
As of Thursday, expectations ran the gamut, with the Atlanta Fed’s closely watched GDPNow tool tracking 2.7% quarterly growth, while the New York Fed’s NowCast report looked for 1.4% expansion. Other estimates largely fell within this range, with consensus among economists polled by Bloomberg calling for 2.3% growth, and the St. Louis Fed’s GDP Nowcast estimate pointing to 1.9% growth.
In the fourth quarter, GDP grew at an annualized pace of 2.2%. Growth was 2% in the first quarter of 2018.
Uber lowers IPO valuation: Ride-hailing company Uber Technologies Inc unveiled the terms for its initial public offering on Friday, telling investors it will seek to be valued at between $80 billion and $90 billion. In an amended S-1, Uber plans to offer stock between a range of $44-$50 per share. The valuation sought is less than the $120 billion valuation that investment bankers told Uber last year it could fetch. [Yahoo Finance]
Amazon earnings beat expectations by a wide margin: Amazon (AMZN) reported earnings of $7.09 per share, crushing expectations of $4.67. The e-commerce giant reported $59.7 billion in sales for the first quarter of 2019 on Thursday, which is inline with analyst estimates. That fell into the higher range of the guidance the company provided in January, which was net sales of $56 billion to $60 billion. [Yahoo Finance]
Crypto market roiled by new allegations: One of the world’s most widely traded virtual currencies faces renewed doubts about its stability, after New York’s top cop accused the coin’s issuer of participating in a cover-up to hide the loss of about $850 million in client and corporate funds. The allegations against Tether and the operator of cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex, announced by the New York attorney general on Thursday. [Bloomberg]
Starbucks posts strong Q2 growth, boosted by US and China sales: Starbucks (SBUX) on Thursday reported better-than-expected earnings, boosted by strong sales in U.S. and China, and raised its full year guidance. The global coffee giant posted earnings per share of 60 cents per share during its fiscal second quarter, compared to 53 cents per share a year ago. [Yahoo Finance]
Ford just embarrassed the hell out of its pickup truck rivals: The maker of the popular F-Series line of trucks said Tuesday it gained market share and grew revenue in its pickup truck category in the first quarter. With F-Series pickups being some of the highest margin products rolling off Ford’s (F) assembly lines, it helped power profits in North America $300 million higher from a year ago. [Yahoo Finance]
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