From Reuters.com

The day ahead: Thursday

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Great things are not expected from September retail sales data as rising unemployment weighs on consumers.

*  Retailers probably saw sales decline again in September, signaling weak demand leading into the holiday season.

*  Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke gives an update on the Fed’s balance sheet.

*  PepsiCo reports third-quarter results.

*  European Central Bank and Bank of England report interest rate decisions.

The day ahead: Thursday

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Consumer spending is in the spotlight with U.S. auto sales and personal income and outlays data expected.

*  Auto sales probably fell in September back to the nearly three-decade lows of early 2009 without government incentives to spur buying.

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