Boeing & the 787 - The hits just keep on coming for Boeing's 787 Dreamliner. The giant plane maker might have thought it had put the grounding and battery problems in its rear-view mirror, but that doesn't seem to be the case. Boeing has placed a big bet on this new wide-body, long range fleet. So far, demand for the plane has remained solid, but one wonders what will happen if problems linger. Boeing shares fell sharply Friday, down more than 5 percent. Still, year to date the stock is one of the best performing in the Dow Jones industrial average, up 35 percent.
Earnings on the Street - Next week, some of the biggest brand names are reporting their quarterly earnings results. How these corporate titans perform and their outlook on the economy going forward will have a big impact on the markets and provide a good read on the strength of the recovery. Coca-Cola reports on Tuesday; IBM and Intel on Wednesday; Verizon, Google and Microsoft on Thursday; and General Electric on Friday.
Another Week, Another Series of Reads on the Housing Market - On Tuesday, the National Association of Homebuilders releases its monthly survey. This survey will provide insight into the impact of higher mortgage rates on housing activity. On Wednesday, the Housing Starts report for June is released. The expectation is that starts for new homes will rise around 3 percent for June. Additionally, Wednesday is the weekly release of mortgage applications. According to the Freddie Mac mortgage survey, the 30-year fixed mortgage rate has climbed to 4.51 percent as of July 11 from 3.59 percent on May 23.
Gas Prices - Prices at the pump have risen for the past four days and AAA reported on Friday that prices could rise around $0.20 or more over the next two weeks. Will this be a short-lived surge or should drivers expect to see prices keep rising through the rest of the summer? Stay tuned …
Ben Bernanke and Congress - Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke is scheduled to deliver a monetary policy report to the House and Senate on Wednesday and Thursday morning. He will likely face lots of questions about the economy, his bond buying stimulus program, and - possibly - who he thinks should replace him when he retires from the Fed. This will be a big event for the markets next week.