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WJR February 2015 Reports

WJR February 2015 Reports

February 27, 2015 - Ron has the day off.  See you Monday!

February 26, 2015

By 11 o’clock this morning, we’ll have stuffed more than 10 pounds of economic data into our proverbial five pound bag. At 8:30, we get Weekly Jobless Claims, the January Consumer Price Index and perhaps more importantly, the January Durable Goods Report. Expect a rebound from the negative numbers in the December Report to an increase of 2 percent. Exclusive of transportation orders, expect a seven tenths of a percent pick up.

Readings on housing prices, natural gas prices and the Kansas City Fed survey are also on the way.

On the way higher by about a percent and a half in the pre-market are shares of retailer Kohl’s. Quarterly operating earnings of $1.83 were 3 cents ahead of estimates. Kohl’s will raise their current dividend by 15 percent.

And I suppose that you can put Sears Holdings report in the positive column, if you consider losing $1.37 per share as good news. Sears was expected to lose $1.89 per share.

Overseas markets paint a mixed picture, with the standout being the Chinese market, which was higher by about two percent overnight. Our futures are indicating that traders are in wait-and-see mode in front of all those economic reports.  Adjusted for fair value, S&P 500 futures are higher by about 2 points, the Dow futures are up 14 points, and the NASDAQ futures are now almost 5 points above fair value.

February 25, 2015

Stock traders apparently liked what Fed head Janet Yellen had to say in front of the Senate Banking Committee yesterday. Today Ms. Yellen >

Although most the big boys and girls have reported in for the quarter, earnings and estimates are fairly plentiful this morning. Target just reported $1.50 per share in profit, which was four cents better than expected on a 3.8 percent rise in same store sales. Guidance was okay, but not above current estimates and Target shares are about 1 to 2 percent higher pre-market.

Hewlett-Packard shares are on the down elevator this morning. Earnings beat estimates by a penny, but HP warned that the strong dollar is going to make a mess of the current quarter.

Dreamworks, Dollar Tree, Boston Beer and Chesapeake Energy missed earnings targets. Lowe’s and Royal Bank of Canada beat their bogey. Campbell Soup reported as expected, but guided lower.

At this point, stock futures are in wait-and-see mode after yesterday’s rally. Adjusted for fair value, S&P 500 futures are lower by about a point, the Dow futures are up about a point, but the NASDAQ futures are now about 5 points below fair value.

February 13, 2015

Traders bid us into another strong rally yesterday. And at this point of the morning, the stock index futures are indicating that the Dow Jones Industrial Average might open right around the 18,000 level, and the S&P 500 might open right around its all-time closing high.

Of course, then again, it’s Friday the 13th. Are you scared?

You may be scared if you hold shares of Zynga. The internet game maker reported an operating break-even, in line with expectations. But guidance disappointed and Zynga shares are getting zinged by about 5 percent pre-market. AIG shares are also indicated lower by about 2 percent on a reported 90 cents in profit. That missed the average estimate by 15 cents. To mollify, AIG will repurchase 2½ billion shares. But so far, traders aren’t impressed.

The preliminary Consumer Sentiment Reading from the University of Michigan comes at 10 this morning and is expected to improve to 98.5.

Japanese stocks were just a fraction lower overnight, but the other major markets overseas followed us higher. Germany hit an all-time high this morning and Greek stocks are up another 5 percent on hopes of a Monday accord with its Eurozone partners.

All that said, we should move higher again at 9:30. At this point, adjusted for fair value, S&P 500 futures are higher by almost 3 points, the Dow futures are up 28, and the NASDAQ futures are now about 10 points above fair value.

February 11, 2015

The last big push of earnings reports for 2014’s fourth quarter is underway. So far, only about 17 percent of the S&P 500 companies have reported lower than expected numbers. Of course, in general, those expectations had already been lowered. However, on the whole, things are still pretty good, even in the >

This morning Pepsico beat the $1.08 estimate by four cents, and Pepsi’s stock looks to be more than 2 percent higher pre-market. 

Animal-health company Zoetis shares look even better than that this morning after reporting 40 cents versus the expected 36, and even after lowering its 2015 guidance. Time Warner came in a nickel ahead of the 93 cent estimate and raised its dividend by 10 percent. Revenue, however, was a little light.

Coming in short of estimates are Owens-Corning and Thomson Reuters. Cisco Systems reports after 4 o’clock today.

Asia markets were mixed again overnight, but Europe is mostly lower as Greece is the word once again. The roller coaster Greek stock market is down more than 4 percent.

Our futures have been slowly sliding much of the morning. At this point, adjusted for fair value, S&P 500 futures are lower by almost 5½ points, the Dow futures are down 63, and the NASDAQ futures are now almost 5 points below fair value.

February 10, 2015

There’s a lot of earnings news out this morning. The award for best report of the morning goes to Coca-Cola (although Kanye West is already complaining that the award should have been Beyonce’.) Nevertheless, Coke shares are looking almost 4 percent higher after reporting 44 cents in quarterly profit which was two cents better than expected.

CVS shares and shares of Regeneron are each higher by more than 1½ percent pre-market on good earnings news. Wyndham Resorts, Spirit Airlines, Starwood, Aeropostale, Spirit Airlines and Urban Outfitters are all out with better-than-expected earnings reports.

The miss of the morning may be brewer MolsonCoors, even though they are raising their dividend by 11 percent and buying back shares. MolsonCoors is indicated about 3½ percent lower pre-market after reporting 55 cents per share in profit, which was a 14 cent miss.

Small business sentiment numbers come at 9 this morning. The Labor Department will give us its Job Openings and Labor Turnover Report at 10.

Asians markets were mixed overnight, but Europe is trending a bit higher. We should get off to a strong start after yesterday’s dip. At this point, adjusted for fair value, S&P 500 futures are higher by 11 points, the Dow futures are up 101, and the NASDAQ futures are now about 25 points above fair value.
February 9, 2015

Friday’s results put a bit of a damper on what was a strong week for stock prices. We’re likely to start the week as we left off. An unexpectedly large, 20% dive in Chinese Imports and a more than 3 percent decline in exports are pretty reliable signs of an economic slowdown in China and beyond.

Over on the other side of the world, it’s likely gonna’ take a lot of love (and maybe some good money after bad) to keep Greece in the Eurozone. The new Prime Minister in Greece appears to be sticking to his campaign promises and sticking IT to the European Union.

McDonald’s is actually out with some good comp store sales this morning everywhere but in Asia, where they ran into some supplier quality issues. U.S.  sales were up four-tenths of a percent, which was a little higher than expected. Nevertheless, the worldwide sales were off, as is the stock in pre-market trade. 

Lower by about 2 percent is American Airlines stock after reporting a nearly 3 percent drop in January traffic.

Locally, Masco reported 24 cents in quarterly profit. That was 4 cents better than expected.

European markets are mainly in the red. Our stock futures have improved quite a bit during the past hour, but if the market were to open right now, it would open lower. At this point, adjusted for fair value, S&P 500 futures are lower by 7 points, the Dow futures are down 57, and the NASDAQ futures are now about 13 points below fair value.

February 6, 2015

It’s Jobs Friday once again, and traders appear to be waiting for the 8:30 release of the Monthly Employment Report before deciding whether to buy or sell this morning. Most expect that 230,000 new non-farm jobs were created in January and that the Unemployment Rate may have dropped to just 5½ percent.

Meanwhile, yesterday’s follow on rally lifted stock prices into positive territory for the year.

Twitter is out with a good earnings report and an increasing number of users. Twitter shares are indicated more than 10 percent higher pre-market. On the famous other hand, Pandora shares are getting clobbered on weak guidance. Pandora shares could lose about 20 percent right off the bat this morning. Shares of GoPro also nothing you’d want to take a picture of this morning, off about 12 percent.

Outside of China, Asian markets were higher overnight. But, outside of Switzerland, European markets are mainly lower. At this point, adjusted S&P 500 futures are flat, the Dow futures are down 15, and the NASDAQ futures are now about a point below fair value.

February 5, 2015

We had a bad case of “rally interruptus” in this last half hour of trading yesterday. The European Central Bank announced that they weren’t really interested in having their banks accept potentially worthless Greek bonds as collateral.  Imagine that. That announcement set the machines into “sell” mode, although that little panic appeared to have subsided this morning.

What’s not subsiding is the flow of cheap money that’s inspiring big companies to buy their way to growth. Latest in line is drug giant Pfizer. They will pay $90 in cash to acquire Hospira. That’s a 39% premium to Hospira’s closing price from last night. The acquisition will add 10 to 12 cents to Pfizer’s earnings right off the bat.

Retailer Michael Kors’ earnings of $1.48 last quarter beat the consensus estimate by 16 cents, but guidance wasn’t so hot. Kors stock is about 12 percent lower pre-market.

L Brands, the owners of Victoria’s Secret announced a dividend increase of 47% and a special dividend of two dollars per share.

Weekly Jobless claims at 8:30 are expected to total 290,000.

Overseas markets are mixed, but mainly a little lower with the standout again being Greek stocks, which are lower by more than 5 percent. It looks like we’ll try to re-ignite a rally at 9:30. At this point, adjusted S&P 500 futures are higher by about 8 points, the Dow futures are up 62, and the NASDAQ futures are now about 11 points above fair value.

February 4, 2015

Great news from Mary Barra and the team at General Motors this morning. Although sales were a little short of expectations, the adjusted profit of $1.19 per share was way ahead of the 83 cent estimate. Management is also taking a proposal to the Board of Directors which will raise the 30 cent dividend by 20 percent to 36 cents. GM shares are almost 4 percent higher pre-market in response.

Drug maker Merck also checked in with better than expected earnings on in-line revenue.

And, as consolidation in the office supply space continues, number one and number two may be getting together. Staples is offering 11 dollars per share to by Office Depot. That would be a 6.3 billion dollar deal. Staples shares are lower by about 2½ percent on the news.

There’s also great news in case your dog or cat like might like food that tastes a bit like strawberry preserves. Smuckers is buying Big Heart Pet Brands. They are the makers of Kibbles & Bit, Milk Bone, Meow Mix and 9 Lives.

Chinese stocks were lower overnight, even after yesterday’s big rally here. European markets are mostly lower.   Our futures are busy digging out of a fairly deep hole. They are better, but if the market were to open now, it would open lower. Adjusted S&P 500 futures are lower by about 5 points, the Dow futures are down 28, and the NASDAQ futures are now about 13 points below fair value.

February 3, 2015

The big rush of earnings reports for calendar year-end companies is behind us. On the whole, earnings were very good, if not quite to the level seen over the past couple of years. There are still some stragglers checking in.

This morning UPS, Aetna and Wendy’s all reported earnings that were pretty much as expected. Aetna raised their estimate for full year profit, although their estimate is still a bit short of analyst expectations. AutoNation reported $1.02 per share in operating earnings, well above the 91 cent estimate.

And speaking of our “auto nation,” we’ll hear about January results from the major automakers as the day unfolds. FCA, as Paul W. just mentioned, reported sales up 14 percent. Total vehicle sales are expected to run at an annualized rate of about 16.6 million units.

The 10 o’clock December Factory Orders report should continue its downward trend at a negative 2.2 percent.

Most of Asia followed our late rally higher overnight. European markets are solidly higher. For those who love to live on the outside edge of the roller coaster, the Greek stock market is higher by more than 10 percent at this hour.

And don’t look now, but crude oil futures are up another 2 percent this morning. Stocks futures are off their earlier highs, but are still pointing up just a bit. Adjusted S&P 500 futures are higher by about 6 points, the Dow futures are up only 37, and the NASDAQ futures are now about 9 points above fair value.

February 2, 2015
January is in the books, with a 3.7 percent decline in the Dow Jones Industrial Average. The conventional wisdom is that “as goes January, so goes the year.” Of course, last January, the Dow declined over 5 percent, and we wound up gaining ground for the year. So conventional wisdom may be conventional, but is often not so wise. That being said, the conventional wisdom of handing the ball to Marshawn Lynch from the two yard line sounds preferable to a pass next time around.

Pitney Bowes matched the earnings estimate this morning, although sales were a little light. Exxon Mobil reported $1.56 in profit, which was 22 cents better than expected on revenue that was a little light. Exxon shares are indicate a couple percent higher pre-market.

At 8:30, the December income and spending numbers are expected to reflect a three-tenths of a percent increase in personal income and a two-tenths of a percent decline in personal spending.

Then, before ten, a couple of manufacturing surveys, the PMI and the ISM are expected to report continued improvement in the manufacturing sector, but not much increase in the rate of improvement.

Overseas markets are mixed, and out futures are off their earlier highs, but are still slightly positive.  Adjusted S&P 500 futures are higher by about 4 points, the Dow futures are up 38, and the NASDAQ futures are now about 4 points above fair value.

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