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Growth Gloom and J.C. Penney Earnings — 5 Things to Know Today

Blockupy Protests Accompany ECB InaugurationBlockupy Protests Accompany ECB Inauguration
Even an ultra-cheap currency can't keep the Eurozone's growth rate up. Photograph by Thomas Lohnes — Getty Images

Hello friends and Fortune readers.

Wall Street stock futures are lower Friday amid fresh evidence of the world economy’s slowdown. Reports about record high oil stockpiles have pushed commodity indexes to their lowest in 16 years, while the Eurozone produced a tepid 3Q GDP report. The dollar is slightly weaker against the euro, while crude futures have only just crawled back above $42 a barrel

Today’s must-read story is from Fortune‘s Adam Lashinsky and it is a profile of Nike (NKE) CEO Mark Parker, who is Fortune’s 2015 Businessperson of the Year after doubling the athletic gear giant’s revenues and profits since he took the helm in 2006.

Here’s what else you need to know today.

1. Tepid global growth

There’s been more evidence of the slowdown in the global economy, as the Eurozone posted GDP growth of only o.3% in the third quarter, under pressure from the slowdown in emerging markets. The news reinforces expectations of more ECB stimulus in the coming weeks and months. Elsewhere, Russia confirmed that its economy shrank by 4.1% from a year ago.

2. U.S. retail sales

The Commerce Department is likely to report today that retail sales in the U.S. rose last month. Sales are expected to have risen by 0.3% after a meager 0.1% increase in the previous month. Meanwhile, the Labor Department is expected to report that the producer price index (PPI) for October gained 0.2% after a 0.5% dip in September.

3. J.C. Penney earnings

While rival department store operator Macy’s (M) saw a decline in quarterly sales due to unseasonably warm weather that resulted in customers delaying purchases of cold weather products, J.C. Penney (JCP) is expected to beat analysts’ revenue forecasts. The company reported better-than-expected same-store sales growth for the quarter earlier this week, as J.C. Penney benefitted from increased sales from expanded Sephora outlets within the company’s stores.

4. Tyco reports Q4 results

Tyco International (TYC), the multinational security services company that moved its headquarters from Switzerland to Ireland last year, reports its fourth-quarter results today. The company is expected to report increased quarterly earnings, though revenue likely declined year-over-year due to foreign currency exchange rates weighing on revenue.

5. Republicans’ “Sunshine Summit”

The top Republican presidential candidates gather in Orlando, Fla. today for their party’s Sunshine Summit, where more than a dozen GOP candidates will speak to the assembled crowds over the course of the weekend. Florida senator Marco Rubio, who has recently been earning the support of the party’s establishment leaders, will be the first to take the stage, while polling favorites Donald Trump and Ben Carson will speak at the end of the day.

— Reuters contributed to this post.