Hello friends and Fortune readers.
Happy 2015! As the first full work week of the year kicks into gear, here’s what you need to know.
1. Congress kicks off its 2015 session.
The 114th session of Congress kicks off on Tuesday. Republicans took control of both the House and the Senate in the recent mid-term elections, marking the first time the party has held dual majorities since 2007. New Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell aims to prioritize the Keystone XL pipeline approval, a long-time goal for Republicans. Also on the agenda for the new session: confirmations of U.S. attorney general nominee Loretta Lynch and defense secretary nominee Ashton Carter.
2. CES launches in Las Vegas.
International CES, more commonly known as the Consumer Electronics Show (CES), kicks off Tuesday, Jan. 6, and goes through Friday, Jan. 9. The show features the latest and greatest in consumer technology items. This year, the organizers expect to welcome more than 3,500 exhibitors and over 160,000 industry professionals from across the tech world. Look out for innovations in the ‘Internet of Things,’ think customized security monitoring, and home automation, as well as advances in drone equipment.
3. Experts gather for an annual cybersecurity conference.
The International Conference on Cybersecurity convenes on Tuesday in New York. The meeting will feature talks by National Security Agency Director Michael Rogers, U.S. Attorney Preet Bharara of New York, and Lisa Monaco, President Obama’s assistant for homeland security and counterterrorism. Top companies — including Deloitte, IBM (IBM) and Pfizer (PFE) — will also be presenting on specific security concerns, such as how to protect trade secrets and digital forensics.
4. December’s jobs report.
The final jobs report for 2014 comes out on Friday, and analysts expect the unemployment rate to fall to 5.7% — the lowest level since June 2008. Analysts anticipate that 243,000 jobs were added in December. That would add to the 2.65 million gains reported so far in 2014, the best year for job growth since 1999.
5. What will happen to interest rates in 2015?
Minutes from the Federal Open Market Committee’s final meeting in 2014 will be revealed on Wednesday. They may provide further insight into when Fed policy makers envision raising interest rates for the first time since late 2008, as well as what economic conditions would cause them to tighten policy. In its statement following the Dec. 16-17 meeting, the committee said it would be “patient” on the timing for any rate increase, a change from its previous pledge to keep interest rates low for a “considerable time.”