Dec. 18, 8:30 a.m. EST - The investment bank issues fiscal-year results. Equity analysts have cut 2008 earnings forecasts for Goldman and other banks on expectations of less income from mergers and debt underwriting.
U.S. HOUSING STARTS
Dec. 18, 8:30 a.m. EST - Builders probably broke ground on fewer houses in November. Despite a 48% plunge in starts since early 2006, the number of unsold new homes is still very high.
Dec. 18, 10 a.m. EST - Best Buy (BBY) leads off with third-quarter results, followed on Dec. 20 by Circuit City (CC). The stores are counting on flat-panel TVs, laptops, and digital cameras to deliver strong holiday sales.
SOUTH KOREA VOTES
Dec. 19 - Conservative party presidential candidate Lee Myung-bak is the front-runner. If elected, he is expected to push for a more business-friendly regulatory environment and take a harder line with North Korea.
GERMAN BUSINESS CONFIDENCE
Dec. 19, 4 a.m. EST - Investors will watch the Ifo Institute for Economic Research's November report for signs that a strong euro and credit market jitters are sapping business confidence. Similar data in France and Italy are due on Dec. 21.
Dec. 19, 8:30 a.m. EST - The food company posts fiscal second-quarter results. To offset rising costs, it is selling smaller cereal boxes, resulting in a higher price per ounce.
Dec. 19, 4 p.m. EST - The enterprise software company presents fiscal second-quarter results. The company is on a roll with strong growth in new software licenses and shares up 25% so far this year.
Dec. 19, 8:50 p.m. EST - The government puts out November foreign-trade figures. The report is not only a timely indicator for Japan's economy but also sheds some light on demand in the U.S.
Dec. 20, 8:30 a.m. EST - Wall Street is bracing for some red ink and the possibility of more bad subprime mortgage news when the bank reveals its fiscal year figures.
Dec. 20, 12 noon EST - Surging fuel prices and slower U.S. economic activity will weigh on the delivery company's fiscal second-quarter results. Both FedEx and rival UPS (UPS) are raising shipping rates for 2008 to help offset the higher costs.
Dec. 20, 5 p.m. EST - Research In Motion (RIMM) posts third-quarter numbers. Analysts will be looking to see if the number of new users trumps the company's forecast of 1.65 million.
U.S. PERSONAL INCOME AND SPENDING
Dec. 21, 8:30 p.m. EST - Economists expect solid personal-income growth for November. The Bureau of Economic Analysis' figures on consumer spending should also look healthier after soft October results, especially for motor vehicles.