Other than the drama that unfolded with Twitter (TWTR) and all of its acquisition chatter that now looks mostly unfounded, the stock market was relatively quiet last week. That's not likely to be the case in the week ahead. Here's why.
Blowhards: hurricanes and presidential candidates
Two of the biggest events this weekend are the presidential debate on Sunday and Hurricane Matthew as it continues to hit Florida and surrounding states through the weekend. Both could have major impacts on the week ahead.
Hurricane Matthew was downgraded from a Category 4 storm to a Category 3 on Friday, but the potential damage from high winds, flooding, and power outages could leave Florida and much of the U.S. Southeast devastated this weekend. There have been reports in the past few days about a surge in roof supply companies' stocks and a drop in insurance companies' stocks. For long-term investors, it's not a good idea to invest based on an approaching one-time storm, but it is important to recognize the short-term effect this hurricane could have on the market.
What could have a much longer-term effect on the market is who will lead the United States for the next four years. A debate Sunday night to help voters decide whom that will be, and how that debate turns out is likely to have an impact on the markets this week as well, especially in specific segments such as energy and healthcare.
Wynn Resorts could give needed guidance
There are a good number of companies reporting earnings this next week, but an important one to watch will be Wynn Resorts (WYNN 0.56%) after the market on Oct. 13. Wynn's earnings will give investors good insights into what's happening in Las Vegas and Macau, and how Wynn is stacking up in each region against competitors Las Vegas Sands and MGM Resorts International.
Wynn opened its $4 billion Wynn Palace in Macau in late August. Macau's market has been crushed over the past two years following government regulations that limited VIP gambling there. However, Macau's total gambling revenue rose in August year over year for the first time in 26 months, and it did so again in September. Wynn's earnings and CEO Steve Wynn's comments about Macau in the earnings call will give investors much more information on whether Macau really is in a turnaround.
Earlier this year, Steve Wynn showed investors his plans for a grand makeover of his Las Vegas property, including a $1 billion investment to build a massive 38-acre clear water lagoon and another 1,000 hotel tower. As of the announcement, the development was still pending board approval, so this earnings call could also give more light on that.
Twitter is likely to continue making headlines
The biggest talk of the last week has been Twitter and its potential acquisition. First, Salesforce.com, and then Alphabet, Apple, and Disney, were all thrown into the mix. Investors were initially interested in a potential buyout, but as each potential bid possibility was shut down, Twitter's stock dropped. Former COO Ali Rowghani even weighed in, saying in an interview Friday, "You know, my sense is that at the current prices, it's pretty unlikely."
Don't count a sale out just yet -- Twitter is looking to end this auction by the end of October, so there could be some movement this week if new potential buyers step up or if one of the previous ones changes its mind. Twitter has over 300 million users worldwide, so even though it has been out of investor favor in the past year, it could be a very interesting property for another company to own.
Bank earnings -- what will Wells Fargo say?
My personal pick for the most interesting thing to pay attention to this coming week is the earnings call with Wells Fargo (WFC -0.74%) CEO John Stumpf following his company's earnings report on Friday, Oct. 14. Its peers Citigroup Inc. and JPMorgan Chase & Co. also report Friday.
Wells Fargo continues to deal with the fallout of its recent account-creation scandal that surfaced in September. Stumpf sat in front of a congressional hearing in late September, and videos of Sen. Elizabeth Warren grilling him, and telling him that he should resign, went viral. However, Stumpf has been relatively quiet on the situation and what his company is doing navigate this disaster. During the earnings call, Stumpf is likely to talk to the situation, and even if he doesn't have prepared remarks on it, then the analyst questions at the end surely will shed more light.