Hello friends and Fortune readers.
Wall Street stock futures are bouncing this morning after news of a tentative ceasefire agreement in Syria, some solid German GDP data and partly reassuring corporate earnings out of Europe, but still have a lot of work to do if they’re to avoid ending the week down. Crude oil prices have jumped too but, at $27.44 a barrel, are still sharply down on the week in the absence of any change in market fundamentals.
Today’s must-read story is from Fortune‘s Geoff Colvin and it looks at three company leaders who he feels are often overlooked, but who still steer strong performances outside of the headlines. Among them: a network TV CEO, a toy company chairman, and the man at the helm of an oil giant.
Here’s what else you need to know today.
1. Jamie Dimon thinks the bank stock rout is overdone.
JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon has sent a strong signal to all the doom’n’gloom mongers in the stock market, buying $26 million of his own bank’s stock – his biggest open market purchase in four years (the last one came just after the ‘London Whale’ trading scandal). Dimon’s move comes after the bank’s shares have fallen 20% since the start of the year, as fears of a global economic slowdown have taken their toll on banks around the world.
2. U.S. retail sales
Today, the Commerce Department will report retail sales figures for the month of January. Overall retail sales are expected to have rebounded slightly last month, increasing 0.1%, after a drop of 0.1% in December. Meanwhile, core retail sales—which correspond the closest to the GDP’s consumer spending component—likely improved by 0.3% in January after dropping by that same amount in the previous month.
3. New York Fed President
Federal Reserve Bank of New York president William Dudley will speak in a press briefing focusing on U.S. economic outlook. Last week, Dudley said that the volatility affecting the global market so far in 2016 could force the U.S. Federal Reserve to rethink its decision to raise interest rates for the first time in nearly a decade at the end of last year.
4. IPG Q4 earnings
Advertising agency Interpublic Group of Companies
will likely post a dip in fourth-quarter revenue today. Investors will want to hear executives’ outlook for 2016 after the company—which includes McCann, FBC, and Lowe and Partners—was hurt in overseas markets by the strong U.S. dollar and slower sales.
5. More economic data
The Labor Department is expected to report that its import price index dropped by 1.4% in January, after previously falling by 1.2% in December, due to the ongoing drop in the price of crude oil prices. Meanwhile, the University of Michigan will provide an update on its preliminary survey of consumer sentiment, which has likely remained stead at 92.0 so far in February.
—Reuters contributed to this article.