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Day Ahead: Top 3 Things to Watch

Investing.com - Here’s a preview of the top 3 things that could rock markets tomorrow. 1. Fed Releasing Meeting Minutes Tomorrow the

Investing.com - Here’s a preview of the top 3 things that could rock markets tomorrow.

1. Fed Releasing Meeting Minutes

Tomorrow the Federal Open Market Committee will release the minutes from its last rate-setting meeting.

The minutes arrive at 2:00 PM ET (19:00 GMT), and the market will be looking for more detail on just how patient the Fed intends to be with its rate hike plan.

There will also be interest in any comments on the balance sheet.

The Fed is close to wrapping up its quantitative tightening program, Investing.com’s Darrell Delamaide wrote.

“First, (the Fed) effectively ruled out any rate increases this year,” Delamaide said. “Now the message coming across is that the Fed won’t be shrinking its balance sheet much more than it has already and will keep it at fairly elevated levels.”

“It may even keep quantitative easing -- purchasing bonds with money created out of thin air -- as a new tool for monetary policy rather than just an emergency measure.”

The market is pricing in rates staying on hold this year, according to Investing.com’s Fed Rate Monitor Tool.

2. Theresa May Parlays With the EU

U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May is going to Brussels to try to minimize the pain of the United Kingdom's exit from the European Union.

Her office says it will be a significant meeting. European Union President Jean-Claude Junker was openly skeptical much would come from the meeting, set for Wednesday evening.

Among the biggest concerns is whether the U.K. and EU-member Ireland can avoid a hard border stop, meaning goods won't be able to flow freely between Northern Ireland and Ireland.

The FTSE index was off 0.6% on Tuesday and is off 0.8% this week. That said, the index is up 6.7% this year.

3. The Earnings Parade Carries On

Wednesday's earnings reports will have a consumer-oriented theme, coming after Wal-Mart's (NYSE:WMT) fourth-quarter results beat on top and bottom lines.

Some of the companies reporting include:

CVS Health (NYSE:CVS). The consensus estimate of analysts polled by Investing.com is that the company will report a profit of $2.09 a share on revenue of $54.6 billion. Shares fell 21% between their summer peak and December and are up 11% since.

Car-rental company Avis Budget Group (NASDAQ:CAR) is seen reporting earnings of 38 cents a share on revenue of $2.05 billion, according to estimates compiled by Investing.com. The shares lost half their value between March and December. They're up a third from the December bottom.

The Cheesecake Factory (NASDAQ:CAKE). The restaurant chain is expected to report a profit of 62 cents a share on revenue of $592.9 million. The shares fell 31% between a July peak to December and are up 11% since.