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Coming Week: Spooky Season

The coming week kicks off on Halloween, but traders say what would really spook the market is a string of big earnings misses or a poor October jobs number.

"It's apropos that the week begins on Halloween, because October has truly been a fright-filled month," says Randy Diamond, sales trader at Miller Tabak. "It's also the beginning of another heavy week of earnings releases, and traders are getting tired of playing trick or treat. It's been a volatile and tiring earnings period, to say the least."

The earnings onslaught resumes on Monday with quarterly reports from FTI Consulting (FCN), Humana (HUM), Occidental Petroleum (OXY) and Kellogg (K).

On Tuesday, the earnings spotlight will shine on the likes of Viacom (VIA), Charter Communications (CHTR) and Marsh & McLennan (MMC).

Those still hungry for more earnings on Tuesday can take a bite out of releases from Panera Bread (PNRA) and Papa John's International (PZZA).

Consumer products giants Colgate-Palmolive (CL) and Procter & Gamble (PG) also will be releasing results. Analysts polled by Thomson First Call expect Colgate-Palmolive to post earnings of 67 cents a share, up from 28 cents a year ago, on revenue of $2.85 billion. For P&G, analysts project earnings of 76 cents a share, compared with 73 cents last year, and revenue of $15.63 billion.

Wednesday's highlights include reports from Beazer Homes (BZH), Credit Suisse Group (CSR), Las Vegas Sands (LVS) and Activision (ATVI).

Cigna (CI) also will report on Wednesday. Analysts are looking for the company to earn $1.62 a share, down from the $1.77 Cigna posted last year, on sales of $4.04 billion.

The earnings frenzy continues Thursday with more than 300 public companies releasing results. Among some of the notable names on the docket are American Tower (AMT), Clorox (CLX), Harrah's Entertainment (HET) and Revlon (REV).

Also reporting on Thursday will be Sara Lee (SLE), Sunoco (SUN) and Imax (IMAX).

The action subsides a bit on Friday, but there should still be some stirrings following earnings announcements from companies including Checkpoint Systems (CKP), KeySpan (KSE) and Fortune Brands (FO).

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