Here Are The Key Market Moving Events For Friday, April 20, 2012

McDonald's Balloon Float Parade Inflate InflationWorkers stand in front of the Ronald McDonald balloon as they prepare for the Annual Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

Photo: Chris Hondros/Getty Images

Earnings season slows slightly on Friday — as it does at the end of every week. But there are still two Dow components reporting: General Electric and McDonald’s. Macro data is light, but includes important announcements from Canada and Germany.Here’s what you need to know.

  • Japan starts things off at 7:50 p.m. on Thursday evening with a reading of its service industry. Economists polled by Bloomberg forecast the Tertiary Index will increase 0.7 per cent in February, after falling 1.7 per cent in January.
  • At 9:35 p.m. a flash reading of business conditions in China will be released. There is no consensus estimate for the April report. 
  • Announcements go quiet until 2:00 a.m. on Friday morning, when German producer prices come out. Consensus is for a 0.4 per cent increase in March.
  • Consumer confidence in the Netherlands follows at 3:00 a.m. The index last stood at -39.
  • At 4:00 a.m. it’s back to Germany with the IFO survey of business conditions. Economists forecast the overall business climate index declined 30 basis points to 109.5 in April, while expectations for the future drop to 102.3 from 102.7.
  • British retail sales follow at 4:30 a.m., with expectations for a 0.4 per cent increase in March when excluding fuel.
  • Attention shifts to Canada at 8:30 a.m. with leading indicators and CPI. Economists anticipate both will increase by 0.5 per cent in March.
  • At 9:00 a.m. Mexico will release new data on unemployment. Forecasts are for a decline to 4.70 per cent in March from 5.33 per cent in February.

Below, the major earnings announcements scheduled for the day.

McDonald’s (MCD): $1.23
Honeywell International (HON): $0.99
General Electric (GE): $0.33
Under Armour (UA): $0.24
Schlumberger (SLB): $0.98
Johnson Controls (JCI): $0.53

Consensus estimates provided by Bloomberg. All times are in Eastern Standard Time.

Click here to see the 18 companies that Bank of America predicts will beat earnings this quarter >

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