NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- It's all positive so far this week with the major U.S. equity indices enjoying a three-day winning streak as the headlines from overseas increasingly point towards Greece being able to avoid default. Thursday, however, may have enough economic data to turn Wall Street's attention back stateside. At 8:30 a.m. ET, a slew of reports hit the tape -- weekly initial and continuing jobless claims, the consumer price index for August, and the Empire State manufacturing index. The employment data should be more of the same. The consensus is for initial claims of 410,000, still holding above the 400K level. The read on CPI is for an increase of 0.2%, building on a 0.5% rise in July, which was the biggest jump since March. Industrial production and capacity utilization for August will show up at 9:15 a.m. ET, followed by the Philadelphia Fed survey for September at 10 a.m. ET. High Frequency Economics is expecting improvement to -10.0 from the surprise drop to -30.7 in August, but there's still going to be some apprehension on trading floors before the number hits the tape. The consensus is also at -10.0, according to Briefing.com. Ian Shepherdson, chief U.S. economist at High Frequency Economics, cautions that jobless claims could deliver a bit of a shock as he's still waiting for Hurricane Irene to manifest itself. "It didn't happen last week," he writes. "
B ut the danger is not yet passed." The big quarterly report arrives after Thursday's closing bell is Research In Motion ( RIMM), which is expected to post earnings of 89 cents a share for its fiscal second quarter ended in August. JPMorgan has a neutral rating on the stock and is expecting the Blackberry maker tread lightly in its all-important outlook. "We believe that it is still unlikely that RIMM has seen any demand weakness though guidance may reflect some caution given the increasingly negative consumer backdrop (note recent poor video game sales data for August)," the firm said in a research note. "Even though we believe recently launched devices and particularly the 9900 are solid we doubt that trumps rapidly declining consumer sentiment and potentially weaker demand."
JPMorgan analyst Rod Hall is expecting Research In Motion to report smartphone shipments of 11.75 million and Playbook shipments of 700,000 for the second quarter. The stock is down nearly 50% so far in 2011, and its co-CEO management structure has drawn criticism as the company has struggled to counter the threat presented by the growing business adoption of Apple's ( AAPL) iPhone and other smartphones. In late July, Research In Motion provided some details on its so-called "cost optimization program," saying 2000 employees were being shown the door. While the guidance is going to be the biggest news, analysts and investors won't be shying away from strategy questions either. Other name-brand earnings reports on Thursday include Pier 1 Imports ( PIR), Winnebago Industries ( WGO), Diamond Foods ( DMND), and National Semiconductor ( NSM). This week saw the final S&P 500 companies report so the tally from Thomson Reuters on the calendar second quarter is complete and year-over-year EPS growth came in at 12%, better than a 9.8% view on July 1, but down from the 13.3% projection on April 1 and worse than 18.9% growth in the first quarter. For the third quarter, analysts are anticipating improvement, forecasting earnings growth of 14.7%, but that number is of course subject to change if the economy and Europe don't cooperate. -- Written by Michael Baron in New York.