Top 3 Things to Watch for Feb. 26 By

© Reuters.

By Kim Khan – It’s clear than any news related to the coronavirus and either its spread or containment will dictate market direction Wednesday.

But apart from what numbers or statements may come out regarding Covid-19, there will be fundamentals to trade on as well.

Home improvement retail remains the highlight of the earnings calendar tomorrow and home sales are on the economic calendar.

Official oil inventories data arrive as well.

Here are three things that could move the markets tomorrow.

1.Lowe’s Reports With Wall Street Bullish

Home Depot (NYSE:) reported quarterly Tuesday that topped expectations, although the stock ended up in the red following the drubbing on Wall Street on pandemic fears.

Rival home-improvement retailer Lowe’s (NYSE:) will issue its numbers ahead of trading Wednesday.

Analysts are looking for a of 91 cents per share on sales of about $16.2 billion, according to forecasts compiled by

Wall Street applauded Lowe’s last earnings report in November, where the company posted solid numbers and impressed investors with the success of its initiatives. That led to a host of sell-side upgrades, including Goldman Sachs (NYSE:) putting the stock on its Conviction Buy list.

Discount retailer TJX Companies (NYSE:) also reports tomorrow.

The owner of TJ Maxx is forecast to report of 77 cents per share and sales of about $11.8 billion.

Major fast food names Wendy’s (NASDAQ:) and Papa John’s (NASDAQ:) will issue numbers as well.

2, New Home Sales Numbers Arrive

Continuing with the housing theme, the latest new home sales numbers will come out tomorrow.

The Commerce Department will report new single-family home sales for January at 10:00 AM ET (15:00 GMT).

Economists are looking for to have risen 3.5% in the month to an of 710,000.

3. Oil Inventories Expected to Show Build

Oil traders will have one eye on Covid-19 developments and one eye on government inventories numbers.

The Energy Information Administration will issue its weekly petroleum inventories report at 10:30 AM ET (15:30 GMT). are expected to have risen by 2 million barrels for the week ended Feb. 21, according to analysts’ forecasts compiled by

The American Petroleum Institute said today its measure of showed a build of 1.3 million barrels, less than some in the market were predicting.

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