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Economic Highlights

Zacks Equity Research

All Eye On Oil Price Movement

Trades from $3

Markets will open this Monday morning despite the minor national holiday still called Columbus Day in more than half the U.S. Futures are up on positive sentiment regarding oil prices; both the WTI and Brent indexes are trading oil at more than $50 per barrel, and a Saudi oil minister said $60 oil may be in play before the end of 2016.

The Wall Street Journal reports this morning that Khalid al-Falih says $60 oil this year is “not unthinkable,” and that oil producers meeting next month in Vienna may find agreement on oil production cuts. The main concern for the Saudi official was that oil producers “don’t crimp too tightly,” which might create a “shock to the system.”

The final earnings report from Alcoa (AA - Analyst Report) before it splits into two companies takes place tomorrow afternoon, unofficially kicking off Q3 earnings season. The raw materials group will retain the Alcoa name, and the refined products division will be known as Arconic. This is the faster growing group, which helped bring Alcoa strong earnings performances upon entering the automotive and aerospace manufacturing space.

Alcoa is currently a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) with a combined Value-Growth-Momentum Style Score of B. Year to date, AA shares are up 6%, and 8.9% in the past month alone. So clearly the market appears to be viewing the coming split as a favorable thing for shareholders.

For more information on what to expect from Q3 earnings season, please read Sheraz Mian’s latest Earnings Preview here: Previewing Q3 Earnings Season

A half-hour before regular trading starts the week, the Dow is up 99 points, the Nasdaq up 23.75 and the S&P 500 up 12 points.