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WJR October 2018 Reports

October 31, 2018 - Ron's awway today.  See you tomorrow! BOO!

October 30, 2018

Yesterday gave us another wild ride in stock prices, especially in the dollar-weighted Dow Jones Industrials.  A big down day in Boeing shares was responsible for 163 points of the Dow’s 245-point loss on the day.  However, it’s not just Boeing shares that are in the dumps.  As we start the day, about two-thirds of the S&P 500 are trading below their 200-day moving average.

What’s been a good quarter of earnings reports is being overshadowed by worries about the trade spat with China.  Nevertheless, those earnings reports continued to be generally positive this morning.  Mondelez shares are almost 3 percent higher on an earnings beat.  Akamai reported 94 cents versus the expected 83, and those shares are about 10 percent higher.  Coca Cola beat the 55-cent estimate by 3 cents.

On the famous other hand, while Pfizer earnings were okay, revenues missed.  Same story at Eaton.  Masco earnings missed by a nickel per share, 65 cents versus 70. Masco shares are lower by about 5 percent pre-market.

Texas Roadhouse shares are off more than 11 percent after their report last night and confirming wide speculation, General Electric will cut its dividend by over 91 percent, down to a penny per share.


Overseas markets are mixed. As we saw once again yesterday, how we start the day is not necessarily indicative of how we’ll end it, but right now, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are higher by about 16points, the Dow futures are up about 129, and the NASDAQ futures are about 50 points abovefair value.October 29, 2018

October 29, 2018

There hasn’t been a lot of Monday merger news on recent Mondays, but we have a big one today.  With their hardware business softening, IBM is taking a big step toward expanding in the software space.  IBM will pay $190 per share to buy Linux software provider Red Hat.  That amounts to a 33-billion-dollar price tag and a whopping 63 percent premium to Friday’s closing price.  IBM shares are about 3 percent lower on the news.

Shares of Dana are about 3½ percent higher pre-market.  Adjusted earnings of 77 cents per share were a penny ahead of estimates and 18 cents better than the comparable quarter of 2017.

The health care story of the mornings is Espiron.  Shares are more than 14 percent higher after successful late-stage testing of an anti-high cholesterol drug.

September Personal Income and Spending data come in about 15 minutes.  Expect that both rose by about four-tenths of a percent, after a three-tenths of a percent increase in both in August.

Chinese stocks fell another 2 percent overnight, but other Asian market finished mixed.  Major European markets are higher on the order of one to two percent.

Our futures have been on the rise much of the morning as stock prices look to reclaim some of last week’s losses, but there’s a long day ahead.  Right now, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are now higher by about 36points, the Dow futures are up about 228 points, and the NASDAQ futures are about 111points abovefair value.October 26, 2018

October 26, 2018

In spite of what has been a pretty positive bunch of earnings reports, stocks prices have been taking a dive on worries about trade and interest rates.  This morning, we’re actually waking up to some less-than-wonderful corporate reports which will likely make most of yesterday’s gains a fond memory.

Amazon, Alphabet and Colgate Palmolive all reported earnings that met or beat expectations.  Unfortunately, revenue for all three missed estimates and Amazon lowered earnings estimates for the full year.  While good earnings are nice, the numbers can be massaged to a certain extent. Lower than expected sales can be a canary in the corporate coal mine.  Money in the door gets traders’ attention. Amazon looks to open 8 percent lower, Alphabet is off about 5 percent.

Western Digital shares are more than 15 percent lower after their earnings report.

At 8:30, the Government will take their first swing at 3rd quarter Gross Domestic Product. That number could be a bad news / bad news story.  While a 3.3 percent increase is expected, a lower number could signal an economic slowdown.  A much hotter number could heighten fears that the Fed will continue marching interest rates higher.

Most overseas markets are lower, with European markets off about one percent.  Our futures are indicating a worse fate than that for early trade in our markets.

Adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are now lower by about 53points, the Dow futures are downabout 315, and the NASDAQ futures are indicating that yesterday’s nearly 3 percent gain could be more than offset with a 3½ percent loss this morning. They are about257 points belowfair value.

October 25, 2018

It’s said that stock prices reflect what traders (and the algorithms that drive trading) think the economy will look like six months from now. Apparently, they are envisioning much higher interest rates, massive trade wars, Congressional upheaval or perhaps a zombie apocalypse because they’re ignoring another batch of pretty good earnings reports.

Today is the busiest day of the quarter for S&P 500 earnings reports and the vast majority are better than even the lofty expectations.

Among the companies reporting better than expected earnings since last night include Bristol Myers, Merck, VISA, Dunkin Brands, Tesla, Comcast, Twitter, Southwest Airlines, Stanley Black & Decker and Microsoft.

Ford Motor announced better earnings than expected last night and reaffirmed full year guidance. Shares are about 4½ percent higher pre-market.

The miss of the morning is Advanced Micro Devices. Earnings were lower than expected and guidance was cut. Traders are cutting almost 20 percent off AMD’s share price this morning.

Durable Goods and Pending Home Sales numbers are on the way, and a half hour ago, the European Central Bank said that their interest rates will hold steady until at least next summer.

Our futures are off earlier highs, but at this point, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are now higher by about 28 points, the Dow futures are up about 222, and the NASDAQ futures are about 130 points above fair value.

October 24, 2018

If you are in the habit of watching the Dow Jones Industrial Average throughout the day – well – first of all, you should consider better uses of your time. Still, watching the Dow yesterday was interesting, especially if you like riding roller coasters in the dark on Halloween. At one point, the Dow was lower by 548 points. It rallied back to almost even before fading in the last half hour.

This morning, we’re seeing how the dollar-weighted Dow can be overly influenced by one of its components. The Dow futures were about 40 points lower until Boeing reported about 45 minutes ago. Boeing earned $3.58 of quarterly profit and raised full-year guidance. That was 11 cents better than expected, and almost immediately shot the Dow futures about 70 points higher. Boeing shares are looking about 4½ percent higher.

Not such great news from AT&T, UPS, Deutsche Bank and Texas Instruments this morning. Texas Instruments reported better earnings than expected but lowered its outlook and the shares are indicated almost 7 percent lower pre-market.

Asian markets were narrowly mixed overnight, but Europe is higher. Our futures have dug their way out of a big hole, but as yesterday proved, it ain’t over till the 4 o’clock bell. At this point, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are now higher by about 2 points, the Dow futures are up 134, and the NASDAQ futures are about 13 points above fair value.

October 23, 2018
We’re in for some rough sledding at the open this morning. The problem started in China, as their market gave back more than half of yesterday’s gains. There was a lot of talk out of Chinese Government officials yesterday, but lacking any action, traders sold the market today, and that selloff has spread across the globe.
A little rush of earnings reports this morning is giving us some good news and some not so much.
Checking in with better than expected results were United Technologies, Verizon, Harley Davidson and McDonald’s. Caterpillar earned $2.86 per share, which was a penny better than estimates, but Cat shares are more than 6 percent lower. Likewise, PulteGroup best the earnings estimate, almost doubling profit from last year, but sales came up a bit short.
The miss of the morning may be 3M. $2.58 of profit was a 22-cent miss. 3M lowered guidance and shares are looking to shed about 6 percent, as currency headwinds are getting part of the blame, but a lot of 3M divisions reported slowing business.
Asian markets lost one to three percent overnight. European markets are between one-half and one and a half percent. At this point, the futures are off their lows, but so what? Adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are lower by 42 points, the Dow futures are down 386 and the NASDAQ future are about 123 points below fair value.
October 22, 2018
We’re kicking off the biggest earnings week of the quarter, with about 100 of the S&P 500 reporting in before the end of the week, with two-thirds of them reporting on Thursday. Overall earnings for the quarter were expected to rise about 20 percent from a year ago. So far, reported earnings have been running a couple percent better than that.
Toy maker Hasbro is not one of those out-performing companies. Earnings of $1.93 last quarter fell a full 30 cents below estimates. Hasbro is blaming the liquidation of Toys R Us for the shortfall in sales. Hard to believe that kids suddenly stop playing with toys because a single retailer went belly-up. Hasbro shares are about 7½ percent lower this morning.
Kimberly Clark beat the $1.63 estimate by 8 cents on higher than expected sales and shares are about 3 percent higher pre-market. As of January 1st, they’ll also have a new CEO. Likewise, Haliburton and Polaris beat on earnings and sales.
This morning’s biotech fireworks belong to shares of Mirati Therapeutics. Shares are indicated to lose about 30 percent of their value after disappointing results on a drug designed to treat non-small cell lung cancer.
Europe is higher. Chinese stocks rose about 4 percent overnight as their Government moved to boost the economy. At this point, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are higher by almost 15 points, the Dow futures are up 57 and the NASDAQ future are about 79 points above fair value.
October 19, 2018
The algorithms that run the machines that make the big buys and sells in stocks continue to be in a grumpy mood. Most earnings reports are handily beating even the optimistic analyst estimates. Yet, international intrigue, currency manipulation and trade was fears appear to have the machines’ attention, as demonstrated by yesterday’s selloff.
This morning, there’s more good news on earnings and more caution on the international front.
Procter & Gamble shares are more than 4 percent higher pre-market as an adjusted $1.12 was three cents better than expected on higher than expected sales. Honeywell shares are also looking higher as $2.03 in quarterly profit beat the $1.99 estimate. VF Corp beat estimates, raised their dividend and raised full year guidance. Coming up just a penny or two short were Snap On and State Street Bank.
Internationally, the U.S./Saudi story continues to twist slowly in the wind and China reported its slowest quarterly economic growth in over 9 years. If you believe their numbers, Chinese GDP rose 6½ percent in the third quarter.
Overseas markets are mixed, but we’re looking to bounce back a bit at 9:30 from yesterday’s losses. At this point, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are higher by about 11 points, the Dow futures are up 154, the NASDAQ future are about 54 points above fair value.
October 17, 2018
Just as with last week’s mini-correction, yesterday’s mini-recovery is best ignored by long-term investors. As always what’s worth attention are interest rates and earnings. This morning the 10-year Treasury yield is fairly well behaved at 3.16 percent, and the corporate earnings reports continue to roll in generally better than expected.
Better than expected profits came last night or this morning from United/Continental Airlines, which also raised full-year guidance, M&T Bank, Winnebago, Abbott Labs and IBM. Abbott lowered fourth quarter guidance a bit, and the bad news at Big Blue is that sales fell short on a continuing slowdown in their legacy lines. IBM shares are looking to open about 4½ percent lower.
The star of the show appears to be Netflix. 7 million new subscribers were 2 million more than expected, and Netflix shares are more than 10 percent higher pre-market.
September Housing stats and the most recent Federal Reserve minutes are on the way later today. Mortgage applications fell 7 percent last week as the average mortgage rate continues to rise. The 30-year conventional with 20 percent down is now averaging 5.1 percent, the highest in more than 7½ years.
Asia followed our rally higher overnight. At this point, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are lower by about 5 points, the Dow futures, weighed down by the IBM results are down 113, but the NASDAQ futures, boosted by the Netflix results are about 30 points above fair value.
October 16, 2018
The recent mini-correction in stock prices has everyone wondering if good news on third quarter earnings will be able to overcome the jitters over tariffs and rising interest rates. This morning it’s a case of so far, so good.
Among the companies reporting better than expected earnings are Morgan Stanley, United Health and Johnson and Johnson, which also raised full year guidance.
Goldman Sachs earned $6.28 per share, 90 cents better than expected. Blackrock’s $7.52 beat the $6.84 cent estimate, although the shares have slipped to percent pre-market. Comerica’s $1.86 was nine cents ahead on revenue that was just a little higher than expected.
The good news/bad news story of the morning is Domino’s Pizza, shares of which have been on quite a run. Earnings of a buck ninety-five were 20 cents ahead, but sales fell well short and Domino’s shares are looking to open off almost 6 percent.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Uber may be going public as early as the first half of 2019.
Overseas markets are generally higher, as are our futures. At this point, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are higher by almost 14 points, the Dow futures are up 146, and the NASDAQ futures are about 62 points above fair value.
October 15, 2018
In spite of rising stock prices Friday, last week was not a pretty one for the markets. But this week is another week and it may get off to an interesting start.
Earnings will start to roll out in volume. Most expect nearly 20 percent gains from the comparable quarter a year ago. Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs will finish off the big bank reports tomorrow. But earlier this morning Bank of America reported 66 cents per share of profit, a 32 percent increase from last year, 4 cents better than expected on slightly better sales than expected. 
Also widely expected, but certainly very sad, especially for Sears and Kmart employees and retirees, Sears filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection today. Sears will close an additional 142 stores by year’s end. It’s a Chapter 11 filing, rather than 7, which means reorganization rather than total liquidation, at least for now.
Japan was lower by almost 2 percent overnight. China was down a percent and a half. European markets are not much moved in any particular direction.
Our futures were in a rather deep hole a few hours ago but have been marching back toward even since then. There’s still a little way to go, but at this point, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are still lower by almost 5 points, the Dow futures, after being down more than 150 points a couple of hours ago are now down only 51, and the NASDAQ futures are about 17 points below fair value.
October 12, 2018
The general media has done a lot of reporting about the stock market’s selloff over the past couple of days. The most prevalent lead that I’ve heard is that “investors were rattled today by the fall in stock prices.”
You know, traders may have been rattled. Speculators likely were rattled. Investors, however, have done their homework, have a solid asset allocation in place and have enough ready cash to ride out the volatility caused by trading algorithms gone wild. Investors are more likely to be intrigued than rattled. Falling interest rates may be a thing of the past, but panic is not a strategy.
Remember that stocks dropped by almost 10 percent in February and March, after a big run-up in January. The S&P 500 fell about 2 percent yesterday, about 5 percent over the past 2 days and about 7 percent since September 20th. That seven percent drop basically puts the S&P back to where it was on the 4th of July, before a big run-up. This is how markets work. Investors plan for them rather than reacting to them.
Most analysts have been planning on another series of good earnings report for the most recent quarter and that reporting season unofficially started today. JP Morgan Chase reported $2.34 in profit, 9 cents better than expected, Citigroup and PNC Bank also beat earnings estimates. Wells Fargo missed by a penny, but most big bank stocks are indicated a percent or so higher.
We’re slightly off our highs of the morning, but adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are higher by about 42 points, the Dow futures are up 373, and the NASDAQ futures are about 157 points above fair value.
October 11, 2018
Okay, everyone. Take a breath.
Yes, domestic stock indices lost around three to four percent yesterday. That puts the S&P 500 about 5 percent off its all-time high. Typically, stocks experience a “correction” or a decline of 10 percent, a couple of times per year. However, stocks have not experienced a lot of volatility lately. In 2017, the largest drawdown was only 3 percent. Don’t forget that between early February and early April this year, the S&P fell almost 10 percent, before bouncing back to new highs. 
So, what happened yesterday should not be shocking. It is, nevertheless uncomfortable. No one likes to see a decline in value. However, when assessing a loss in a portfolio, people tend to measure from the highest value it’s ever reached. Comparing instead to the total of a year or two or five ago gives you a better perspective.
For getting a perspective on traffic at Costco, know that September same store sales were 8.4% higher than a year ago. That’s almost 3 percentage points higher than expected. Delta Airlines reported quarterly earnings of $1.80 per share this morning, 6 cents better than expected,
Asian markets followed us lower overnight, losing 4 to 5 percent. Our futures have improved over the past half hour, but it still looks like there’s a rough open ahead. Adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are lower by about 21 points, the Dow futures are down 229, and the NASDAQ futures are about 69 points below fair value.
October 10, 2018
An old friend used to say “it’s not the money – it’s the amount.” Extending that thought to the stock market – “it’s not rising interest rates - it’s how fast they’re rising.”
Comments by Dallas Fed President Kaplan in support of continued rate hikes sent another shiver through the stock market yesterday before buyers stepped in. Today, we have two more Fed heads giving speeches that likely support increasing rates, while President Trump continues to voice his opposition to further hikes. Of course, it’s the Fed’s call, not his.
Speaking of rising rates, the Mortgage Bankers Association said this morning that the average interest rate on a conventional 30-year mortgage with 20 percent down is now over 5 percent at 5.05. That’s the highest rate we’ve seen in over 7½ years.
Fastenal shares are slumping a bit re-market. Earnings of 69 cents last quarter were 2 cents better than expected, but 12 cents of that 69 came from one-time tax benefits.
The September Producer Price Index rolls out in just about 15 minutes. Expect another two-tenths of a percent increase there.
Asian markets rebounded a bit overnight, but Europe is mixed. 
Earlier gains in our stock futures have all but disappeared over the past hour. Adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are lower by a bit more than a point, the Dow futures are up only 8 points, but the NASDAQ futures are about 28 points below fair value.
October 9, 2018
At one point this morning, the interest rate of the 10-year Treasury note rose above the 3¼ percent level, that’s an 11-year high, sending stock futures lower on fears that the long-slumbering rise in rates is waking up.
Shareholders of PPG Industries are waking up to a stock price that’s about 9 percent lower after the paint and coatings supplier warned that input costs are rising and Chinese business is softening.
Home Builder DR Horton share are off about 2 percent after reporting September sales below expectations. However, shares of Papa John’s look to open about 9 percent higher on word that a private equity firm might be interested in acquiring the company.
A number of gulf-coast oil drilling platforms are shut down as Hurricane Michael approaches, and the price of a barrel of West Texas Intermediate is up to just under 75 bucks.
Stocks fell in Japan as stock trading resumed after a long weekend, but stocks in China recovered a bit from Monday’s drubbing. European markets are generally lower by a half-percent or so.
Yesterday, the Dow Jones Industrials dug themselves out of a more than 200-point hole to finish higher. This morning, stock futures attempted a couple of rallies, but are still stuck in the mud. Adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are lower by 11 points, the Dow futures are down 95 and the NASDAQ futures are about 28 points below fair value.
October 8, 2018
Fears that interest rates will rise too quickly sent stock prices south late last week. Yield on the 10-year Treasury note reached nearly 3¼ percent on Friday. Remember that the 10-year rate was under 3 percent just 3 weeks prior. If you don’t have a calculator handy, I’ll do the hard work for you – that’s a nearly 9 percent rise in just 15 trading sessions.
There won’t be any bonds trading in the U.S. today, as the bond market is closed for the Columbus Day Holiday. The stock market will open and will likely open lower on news out of our good friends in China.
Overnight, the Chinese Central Bank cut bank reserve requirements and expanded their QE program as it appears that the Chinese economy may be struggling a little more than many may have thought.
By the end of this week, we’ll get a sense of whether the third quarter earnings reports will be a struggle, as several major banks will kick off reporting season.
The Japanese market was closed overnight for Health and Sports Day, Canada taking the day off for Thanksgiving. The markets that are open are trading lower. China, for one, was off more than 3 percent.
Our futures have improved over the past hour but are still indicating a lower open at 9:30. Adjusted for fair value, the
October 5, 2018
It’s no secret that the Federal Reserve will continue to push short-term interest rates higher. Last week they made it clear that they were no longer interested in providing “accommodative monetary policy.” Said simply, long term rates are now in the hands of the market. Yesterday, that market pushed the rates on longer term bonds higher, with the key 10-year Treasury close to three and a quarter percent. That’s almost one percent higher than a year ago and almost double the rate of just 25 months ago.
Slow increases can be tolerated. The fear is that those rate increases will accelerate more quickly which will be bad news for stocks and bonds, not to mention mortgage rates.
Costco mentioned a “weakness in internal controls” in their quarterly report last night, and even though that weakness will not result in a restatement of results, Costco shares are about 2½ percent lower pre-market in spite of matching the earnings estimate and beating the sales estimate.
All eyes are on the Labor Department’s Jobs Report that comes at 8:30 this morning. Expect 180,000 new non-farm jobs and a dip in the unemployment rate to 3.8 percent. If the numbers are better than that, it may be bad news for stock and bond prices on fears of higher interest rates.
Outside of Mainland China and Australia, we have a sea of red numbers overseas. Ahead of the Jobs Report and adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are up about a point, the Dow futures are up 5, but the NASDAQ futures are 17 points below fair value.
October 3, 2018
A 12 percent rise in the pre-market price for a stock is fairly significant. Of course, it’s somewhat easier to rise 12 percent when your stock is only worth a buck and a half or so. This morning, JC Penney shares are indicated about 12 percent higher at $1.75 per share on word that the former CEO of Joann stores. Jill Soltau, will be taking over as CEO at Penney.
Speaking of stocks rising based on new CEO announcements, General Electric is up about a half-percent pre-market after rising nine percent over the past couple of sessions.
Home Builder Lennar is also having a pretty good pre-market, with shares up about 2½ percent. Lennar reported that sales of new homes were up about 83 percent from the comparable quarter a year ago.
Asian stock markets were mostly lower, with Japan dragged lower by a decline in auto stocks. Aston-Martin went public in London this morning, and shares are about 7 percent lower. Outside of Germany, which is closed for the German Unity Day holiday, Europe is solidly higher on hopes that Italy will indeed make good on debt repayment commitments.
Our stock futures have been on a slow rise over the past few hours. Right now, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are higher by 10½ points, Dow futures are up 113 and the NASDAQ futures are 31 points above fair value.
October 2, 2018
September Auto Sales numbers will be rolling off the line today.  General Motors, which doesn’t bother with monthly sales reports, will report sales for the entire third quarter.
Third quarter corporate earnings season doesn’t get going for another week or so, but this morning we heard a pretty good report from Pepsico. $1.59 in profit was 2 cents better than expected on better than expected sales, and 4.9 percent organic growth. Pepsico did warn that the strong U.S. dollar will put a drag on the rest of the year. However, that will be a new CEO’s problem, as Indira Nooyi, after a very good run, will retire tomorrow. Pepsico shares are about one percent higher premarket.
Paychex will report earnings later today. Shares of StitchFix are about 20 percent lower this morning after reporting slowing growth yesterday afternoon.
Asian markets were mixed overnight, with stocks in Hong Kong down over 2 percent after a three-day weekend. Stocks rose a bit in Tokyo. Europe is solidly lower. Our futures have made up some ground over the past few hours, but it looks like we still might see red at 9:30 as well. Right now, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are lower by 2½ points, Dow futures are down 33 and the NASDAQ futures are about 11 points below fair value.
October 1, 2018
It’s the first day of a new quarter and the first day of a month that is home to a number of scary memories for equity investors. However, August and September were nicely positive, in spite of their rather ugly reputations. Timing the market by using seasonality gets a lot of press, but like any other timing strategy – it doesn’t always work.
Sometimes a new CEO works to boost a stock price. That’s working for General Electric this morning. Former Danaher CEO Larry Culp will take the reins at GE immediately, and GE shares, which are off by about two-thirds since the end of 2016 are about 13 percent higher pre-market. Tesla shares are indicated about 17 percent higher after the company settled with the SEC regarding the tweets of Elan Musk. Musk will remain CEO, but not Chairman of the Board.
Egg producer Cal-Maine reported quarterly profit of 26 cents per share, which missed estimates by 23 cents. And, in an example of forecasting profits before they’re hatched, Cal-Maine expects future pricing pressure due to a big increase in the number of chicks recently hatched that will increase egg production soon.
Markets in China and Hong Kong were closed overnight for National Day. European markets are higher, and due to the new trade agreement with Mexico and Canada, we’ll head higher at 9:30 as well. Right now, adjusted for fair value, the S&P futures are higher by 16 points, Dow futures are up 191, and the NASDAQ futures are about 51 points above fair value.
WJR November 2018 Reports
WJR September 2018 Reports

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