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Fed decision and earnings ahead, Twitter's rebranding plan - what's moving markets


Investing.com -- Investors gear up for a crush of corporate earnings and a major Federal Reserve policy decision that could reveal clues about the path ahead for the U.S. economy. Elsewhere, Chevron 's second-quarter earnings top expectations, while Elon Musk hints at a sweeping overhaul of Twitter's branding. 1. Futures edge higher U.S. stock futures inched up on Monday, with investors awaiting both a parade of corporate results as well as an upcoming interest rate decision from the Federal Reserve. At 05:17 ET (09:17 GMT), the Dow futures contract added 43 points or 0.13%, S&P 500 futures gained 8 points or 0.18%, and Nasdaq 100 futures increased by 42 points or 0.27%. This week's earnings are expected to provide further clues into the health of the broader U.S. economy. Several stronger-than-anticipated second-quarter returns so far have fuelled hopes that the U.S. may be able to engineer a soft landing in the face of surging borrowing costs. Market participants suspect that the Fed will most likely decide on Wednesday to resume its unprecedented monetary tightening cycle, which the central bank kicked off last year in an aggressive attempt to cool red-hot inflation. According to Investing.com's Fed Rate Monitor Tool, there is a 98% chance that the Fed will hike the benchmark federal funds rate by a quarter-percentage point to a range of 5.25% to 5.50%. Where policymakers go from there remains a cause for debate. In particular, economists will be keen to see if the Fed will signal its intention to pull back from further rate rises, or give itself the flexibility to react to future economic conditions. 2. Chevron beats estimates; busy earnings week ahead Oil major Chevron (NYSE:CVX) posted better-than-anticipated profit in the second quarter and suggested that it was open to more dealmaking and shareholder distributions in the future. In a rare preliminary filing, the company reported adjusted earnings per share of $3.08 for the three months ended on June 30, topping Wall Street expectations. Chief Executive Michael Wirth told Reuters that the performance was "strong" despite softening oil prices. Quarterly net profit came in at $6 billion, nearly half the record level reached in the corresponding period last year. Full results from Chevron, the number two U.S. oil group, are due to come out in a batch of key corporate earnings on Friday. The numbers will help round out a busy week of results that will feature top U.S. oil firm Exxon Mobil (NYSE:XOM), consumer goods giant Procter & Gamble (NYSE:PG), and planemaker Boeing (NYSE:BA). Tech titans Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN), Alphabet (NASDAQ:GOOGL), and Meta Platforms Inc (NASDAQ:META) are also set to report. 3. Musk's Twitter rebranding "Larry T Bird" could be on the verge of retiring. Twitter may soon scrap its famous light blue bird logo, which the social media platform's co-founder Biz Stone once named after the basketball legend. According to a tweet from owner Elon Musk, the company will soon "bid adieu" to the Twitter brand and, subsequently, "all the birds." The billionaire added that the image will instead be replaced with an "X". The letter points to Musk's larger ambition to transform Twitter from a short-text messaging service into a so-called "everything app" that has features like peer-to-peer payments and e-commerce shopping. Musk's vision for a revamped Twitter comes as the company grapples with flagging advertising revenues, a heavy debt load, and fresh competition from Meta's Threads. As recently as July 14, Musk admitted that the business is still "net cash flow negative." 4. Adidas swamped with "Yeezy" shoe orders - FT Adidas AG (ETR:ADSGN) has reportedly received €508 million (or about $565 million) in orders for the first "Yeezy" shoes sold since the German sportswear group cut ties last year with Ye, the rapper formerly known as Kanye West. Sales of Yeezy shoes were halted last October after Ye made antisemitic remarks. The loss of the highly profitable line hit Adidas's first-quarter sales by around $440 million. In order to avoid a deep write-down on its remaining stock, Adidas announced in May that it would sell some of its leftover Yeezy products and donate the proceeds to different charities that fight antisemitism and racism. Demand for the initial batch of 4 million pairs of Yeezy shoes sold from late May to early June was above Adidas' "most optimistic forecast," according to the Financial Times, citing people familiar with the matter. This has helped ease fears at Adidas that controversy around Ye's statements would make the Yeezy brand too toxic, the FT added. 5. Oil hands back some recent gains Oil prices eased slightly on Monday, with traders looking ahead to this week's rate-setting meetings from U.S. and European central banks. The declines were somewhat mitigated by hopes that top oil importer China would roll out fresh stimulus measures to help revive flagging growth, as well as the prospect of tighter supplies. Saudi Arabia and Russia are both expected to cut production next month. By 05:15 ET, the U.S. crude futures traded 0.12% lower at $76.98 a barrel, while the Brent contract slipped by 0.16% to $80.75. Both of the benchmarks jumped by 1.5% and 2.2% respectively last week, their fourth consecutive week of gains.

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