The Week Ahead: Grain Belt hearings, H&R Block earnings, digital inclusion event

Here’s a look at some of the stories Missouri Business Alert is tracking this week:


Gallup will report its monthly consumer spending measure, providing an estimate of the average amount Americans spent or charged on a daily basis in November.

The Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission will convene two days of meetings in southeast Missouri. The commission will hold a closed meeting Monday in Scott City followed by an open session Tuesday in Cape Girardeau. The commission’s final meetings of 2016 come as state transportation officials contend with a continued funding crunch.

James Bullard, president of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, is scheduled to speak at an economic forecast luncheon in Phoenix.


The Census Bureau will report factory orders for October. Orders are expected to rise 2.7 percent for the month, according to Econoday.

The Commerce Department will report international trade for October. Consensus estimates call for the U.S. to post a trade deficit between $39 billion and $44 billion.

Companies scheduled to report quarterly earnings include Autozone and Michaels.


The Missouri Public Service Commission will hold the first in a series of public hearings on the Grain Belt Express, a transmission line that would convey wind energy from Kansas, across Missouri and other states, to population centers in the east. The PSC rejected an application for the project last year amid concerns from farmers and other landowners in the transmission line’s path. Eight hearings are scheduled over the next week.

H&R Block, the Kansas City-based tax services company, will report quarterly results and hold a conference call. The company posted steeper losses than expected in its first quarter, which ended July 31, and promised changes. Since then, Block has announced interest-free advances on tax refunds in an effort to attract more early-season tax filers.

Other companies scheduled to report quarterly earnings include Caseys General Stores, Costco Wholesale, Lululemon Athletica and Sears Holdings.


Peak Resorts, the Wildwood-based owner and operator of ski resorts, is scheduled to report quarterly results and hold a conference call.

Kansas City nonprofit Connecting for Good will host its first State of Digital Inclusion Breakfast, an event designed to explore the impact of digital literacy and the digital divide in Kansas City.


Ferrellgas Partners, the Overland Park, Kansas-based propane company, is scheduled to report quarterly results and hold a conference call.

Lee Enterprises, the Iowa-based parent company of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and dozens of other media properties, is scheduled to report quarterly results and hold a conference call.

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