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Procter & Gamble, Schlumberger, Freeport McMoran: 3 things to watch

By Liz Moyer

Investing.com -- Stocks were down in the final minutes of trading on Thursday amid lackluster earnings from some of the biggest U.S. companies.

Earnings season is just getting underway this week, so there is plenty more time for investors to gauge the health of the economy by way of corporate earnings.

While big banks benefited from rising rates in the form of higher interest income, their dealmaking businesses were weighed down by lackluster merger and stock issuance activity. Smaller banks were reporting declines in deposits from the fourth quarter as customers looked for accounts with higher yields.

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Tesla (NASDAQ:TSLA) met expectations but its gross profit margin was squeezed by several price cuts this year, sending its shares down more than 10%. The price cuts are driving up demand, however. AT&T (NYSE:T) reported that subscriber growth had slowed, weighing on its stock, which also fell more than 10%.

On Friday, more data on services and manufacturing are due out, followed by reports next week on home prices and housing sales, a reading of first-quarter gross domestic product and personal consumption expenditures for March, a key inflation measure closely watched by the Federal Reserve.

Mixed earnings will also factor into the Fed’s upcoming decision on interest rates at the start of May. Futures traders expect the central bank to raise rates another quarter of a percentage point and then pause the rate hikes after that.

Here are three things that could affect markets tomorrow

1. Procter & Gamble

Consumer products giant Procter & Gamble Company (NYSE:PG) is expected to report earnings of $1.32 a share on revenue of $19.25 billion.

2. Schlumberger results

Oilfield services company Schlumberger NV (NYSE:SLB) is expected to report earnings per share of 60 cents on revenue of $7.45B.

3. Freeport-McMoRan

The mining company Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold Inc (NYSE:FCX) is expected to report earnings per share of 43 cents on revenue of $5.2B.

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