Investors are gearing up for a big week of earnings, and the third-quarter results could tell us a great deal about the state of the American consumer.
Companies as diverse as Netflix, Caterpillar, and Ford will report their third-quarter numbers this week. But the most indicative results might come out of McDonald's, which reports on Monday before the opening bell.
Peter Saleh, who covers the fast-food giant for Telsey Advisory Group, says that with more than 14,000 restaurants across America, McDonald's can tell us a great deal about consumer spending.
McDonald's is "almost everywhere," Saleh said. "So weak results out of McDonald's would suggest that the overall economy has not materially improved."
With that in mind, how will the results actually look?
"This is probably not going to be a good traffic quarter for McDonald's," Saleh predicts. "They're trying out different things, like Mighty Wings, to try to spur some interest, but so far we haven't seen a real significant rebound."