The Week Ahead: Local elections, jobs report, MLB Opening Day

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

Top picks

• Major League Baseball swings back into action with Opening Day. For starters, the St. Louis Cardinals host the defending World Series Champion Chicago Cubs on Sunday night, and the Kansas City Royals visit the Minnesota Twins on Monday afternoon. Both of Missouri’s teams are looking to bounce back after failing to make the playoffs in 2016.

• Voters across the state will cast ballots in local elections Tuesday. In Kansas City, residents will decide on $800 million of general obligation bonds. The ballot in St. Louis features a mayoral race and funding for MetroLink expansion and a downtown soccer stadium. Springfield citizens face decisions on their mayor, city council and a $189 million school bond. Choices in Columbia include seats on the city council, school board and hospital board.

• Also Tuesday, the plan for Kansas City’s proposed downtown convention hotel will go before the Kansas City Plan Commission, a citizens’ advisory group. Commission approval is one of the final major hurdles to clear for the $311 million project, which has been in the works for years.

• Monsanto is scheduled to report quarterly results and hold a conference call Wednesday. The Creve Coeur-based seed company has been a fixture in recent headlines, both for lawsuits alleging that the active ingredient in its Roundup herbicide is carcinogenic, and for speculation about the fallout from its pending merger with Bayer.

• The Federal Reserve Bank will release minutes from the March meeting of its Federal Open Market Committee on Wednesday, providing additional details on the central bank’s latest decision to raise interest rates and, potentially, on the calculus involved in future rate hikes.

• The National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City will host a ceremony Thursday commemorating the centennial anniversary of the U.S. entering the war. The event will feature presentations, musical performances, flyovers by military aircraft and appearances by foreign dignitaries.

• Expect a resurgence of scuttlebutt about mergers in the telecom sector. With the The Federal Communications Commission’s spectrum auction — and a corresponding quiet period for talk of tie-ups between spectrum-holders — ending last Thursday, wireless companies can engage in M&A talk again. Sprint executives have signaled the Overland Park, Kansas-based company may be in the market to buy or sell.

• The Labor Department will deliver its Employment Situation Summary for March on Friday. Econoday’s consensus projects a gain of 178,000 jobs, down from 235,000 last month, and an unemployment rate of 4.7 percent, holding steady from February.

Day planner

Monday

Gallup Consumer Spending Measure released; Institute for Supply Management Manufacturing Index released; Purchasing Managers’ Manufacturing Index released

Tuesday

Motor vehicle sales reported; international trade reported

Wednesday

Federal Open Market Committee March meeting minutes released; earnings expected from Bed, Bath & Beyond, Monsanto and Walgreens Boots Alliance

Thursday

Chain store sales reported; earnings expected from Carmax

Friday

Employment Situation Summary released; consumer credit reported


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