Earnings from Cisco Systems and a Federal Reserve meeting about interest rates will grab the most attention from economy watchers this week.
The Federal Open Market Committee meets Tuesday to discuss interest rate policy. The group, chaired by Alan Greenspan, lowered interest rates at its previous Oct. 2 meeting and Wall Street believes it will trim rates once more in an effort to ease lending costs for companies as the U.S. economy looks increasingly bleak.
Cisco reports earnings on Monday, and analysts expect the telecom gear juggernaut to post earnings of two cents in the first fiscal quarter. That compares with a profit of 18 cents in the same quarter a year ago. Wall Street estimates that Cisco will generate revenue of $4.17 billion versus $6.52 billion a year ago.
Other significant earnings this week include entertainment and Internet player Walt Disney on Thursday, and TMP Worldwide, owner of the job search Web site Monster.com, on Monday.
Other events scheduled this week:
- Softworld takes place at the Fairmont Hotel in Vancouver, Cananda, Nov. 4-6. The event is for executives in the technology industry and features discussions on computer networking, software and Internet media strategies. Representatives from companies like Macromedia, Sun Microsystems and BEA Systems will make speeches.
- Tech industry trade group AeA will host a conference at the Sheraton Hotel in San Diego, Calif., Nov 4-7. The gathering is for analysts, fund managers and investment bankers and will address financial management issues within the tech industry and features a presentation from Applied Micro Circuits Chief Executive David Rickey.
- The BattleBots Tournament takes place at Treasure Island in San Francisco, Nov 4-10. The event is a fight-to-the-death battle between homemade robots of various weight classes that compete for prize money. Click here for ticket information.
- NGN2001 takes place at the Coply Place Marriott in Boston, Nov. 5-9. The event is geared toward technology investors and professionals in the telecom industry who want to learn about industry subjects like the Internet and optical networking. Featured speakers include Cisco Senior Vice President Mike Volpi and America Online Vice Chairman Ted Leonsis.
- O'Reilly & Associates will hold a conference on peer-to-peer and Web services at the Westin Grand in Washington, D.C., Nov. 5-8. The event will focus on Internet technology and features speeches by representatives from IBM, Microsoft and Sun.
- The Linux Showcase & Conference takes place at the Oakland Marriott City Center in Oakland, Calif., Nov. 5-10. The event will focus on products for the open-standard Linux operating system and includes tutorial sessions.
- Electronic Book 2001 convenes at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center in Washington, D.C., Nov. 5-7. The conference will focus on developments in the e-book industry and features a keynote speech by CEO Jack Romanos of book publisher Simon & Schuster along with presentations by representatives from companies like IBM and Adobe Systems.
- VentureWire will sponsor a conference for private technology companies at the Fairmont Hotel in San Jose, Calif., on Nov. 6. The gathering will discuss the strategies that small companies can use to manage their way through the current slump in the tech sector. Featured speakers include Intuit Chairman Bill Campbell, Garage.com CEO Guy Kawasaki, Francisco Partners founder Sanford Robertson and representatives from venture capital and investment banking firms.
- Proponents of InfiniBand technology will hold a conference at the Century Plaza Hotel in Los Angeles, Nov. 7-8. InfiniBand is a high-speed connection technology that links together servers and computer data storage networks.
- Biotech company MDS Proteomics will hold a panel on Nov. 8 at 9 a.m. EST on proteomics, a kind of DNA research related to genomics. The panel will discuss and debate the prevailing ethical and technological issues in the field. Panelists include Eric Lander, Whitehead Center for Genome Research; Dr. Caroline Kovach, IBM Life Sciences; Frank Gleeson, MDS Proteomics; Dr. Calvin Stiller, Ontario Research and Development Challenge Fund Board; Dr. Joseph Avruch, Massachusetts General Hospital; Jessica Chutter, Morgan Stanley; and Mathew Vincent, Ropes and Gray. The call-in number is 888-293-1205, and the presentation will be archived for a week afterwards.
Monday, Nov. 5
- Cisco builds telecom and networking equipment. Per-share consensus estimate for the first fiscal quarter: profit of 2 cents.
- Infonet is a telecom carrier that offers data services to global businesses. Per-share consensus estimate for the second fiscal quarter: zero cents.
- TMP Worldwide is an employment recruitment firm that also runs the popular job search Web site Monster.com. Per-share consensus estimate for the third quarter: profit of 34 cents.
- Time Warner Telecom is a subsidiary of AOL Time Warner and provides telecom services in 42 markets in the U.S. Per-share consensus estimate for the third quarter: loss of 31 cents.
- Vishay Intertechnology makes components and other electronics for telecom and computer manufacturers. Per-share consensus estimate for the third quarter: profit of 1 cent.
- Qualcomm develops chip designs for wireless phones and licenses the technology out to manufacturers. Per-share consensus estimate for the fourth fiscal quarter: profit of 25 cents.
- Metromedia Fiber Network builds urban optical fiber networks that carry telecom data. Per-share consensus estimate for the third quarter: loss of 33 cents.
- Nvidia makes graphics chips for PCs. Per-share consensus estimate for the third quarter: profit of 23 cents.
- XO Communications competes against established phone companies and offers phone and Internet services to large and small businesses. Per-share consensus estimate for the third quarter: loss of $1.24.
- Walt Disney is an entertainment company that maintains Interests in films, theme parks, consumer goods and the Internet. Per-share consensus estimate for the fourth fiscal quarter: profit of 7 cents.
Monday, Nov. 5
- The Non-manufacturing NAPM index tracks how many hard goods were bought monthly by purchasing managers in the services industry. Wall Street watchers expect the index to slide to 47 percent in October from 50.2 percent in September.
- The Federal Open Market Committee, the policy-setting arm of the Federal Reserve, meets to discuss interest rates. Many analysts think that the Fed will lower interest rates for the tenth time this year.
- Quarterly productivity figures from the Labor Department measure the quantity of goods and services produced relative to the amount of labor and capital used in the process, and basically provides a picture of the economy's efficiency. Economists expect this closely watched figure to climb 1.2 percent for the third quarter compared to the second quarter's increase of 2.1 percent.
- Wholesale Inventories represents the percentage change in the amount of goods in wholesale inventories in the United States. This number is expected to fall 0.3 percent for the month of September compared to a drop of 0.1 percent in August.
- The Consumer Credit report by the Federal Reserve shows the monthly debt assumed by consumers for purposes other than home mortgages. Consumers are expected to take on $0.5 billion in debt for September from $2.3 billion in August.
- Initial Claims refers to the number of people who filed for unemployment benefits each week as reported by the Department of Labor. Claims will be reported for the week of Nov. 3.
- The import and export price index from the Department of Labor indicates the percentage change in import and export prices for October. No estimates were available.