Updated from Oct. 22Traders had better keep their seatbelts buckled, because the earnings roller coaster ride continues in the coming week. "We are seeing a huge divergence between the stocks that can and the stocks that can't," says Paul Mendelsohn, strategist at Windham Financial. "For every Caterpillar ( CAT) or Pfizer ( PFE) earnings implosion, we are getting fantastic results from companies like Google ( GOOG) with the ability to take the market back up." The earnings parade resumes on Monday with quarterly reports from Cendant ( CD), Johnson Controls ( JCI) and Texas Instruments ( TXN). Drugmakers Merck ( MRK) and Schering-Plough ( SGP) will try to avoid a repeat of last week's Pfizer blowup when they report earnings on Monday. On Tuesday, Internet players taking the stage include Akamai Technologies ( AKAM), Amazon.com ( AMZN) and Ameritrade ( AMTD). Defense giant Northrop Grumman ( NOC) also will be releasing results. The Thomson First Call mean earnings estimate for the company is 69 cents a share, down from the 80 cents a share the company earned a year earlier, on revenue of $7.6 billion. Wednesday's highlights include reports from Anheuser-Busch ( BUD), Callaway Golf ( ELY), ConocoPhillips ( COP) and Zimmer ( ZMH). Corning ( GLW) will also take the spotlight on Wednesday. Analysts are looking for the glassmaker to earn 21 cents a share, up from the company's earnings of 14 cents a share last year, on sales of $1.18 billion. The earnings frenzy reaches a crescendo Thursday with more than 500 public companies releasing results. Among the notable names on the docket are Exxon Mobil ( XOM), Microsoft ( MSFT), KLA-Tencor ( KLAC), MetLife ( MET) and Sony ( SNE). Also reporting on Thursday will be AutoNation ( AN), Cinergy ( CIN) and Raytheon ( RTN). Things cool down a bit on Friday, but there should still be some action following earnings announcements from the likes of Archer Daniels Midland ( ADM), Avon ( AVP) and Overstock.com ( OSTK). Chevron ( CVX) also will post its results Friday. Analysts expect the oil giant to earn $1.92 a share, up from $1.28 last year, on revenue of $55.5 billion. Yes, that's billion with a "b."
Storm WatchAside from earnings, traders will also be tracking Hurricane Wilma's progress. The Category 4 storm, which has killed at least 13 people in Haiti and Jamaica and was last seen tearing a path up the Mexican coast, is expected to arrive in Florida by Monday morning. Florida officials have not called for mandatory evacuations, but Gov. Jeb Bush has called a state of emergency, as residents prepare for the eighth hurricane to pass over the state in a little over a year. At 8 p.m. EDT Sunday, Wilma was centered about 170 miles west-southwest of Key West, and was moving northeast at about 15 mph. Wilma's impending landfall may be frightening citizens of the Sunshine State, but oil traders seem far from fearful. Despite the devastation to the Gulf refineries caused by the one-two punches of Katrina and Rita, oil prices have fallen ahead of Wilma's arrival, dropping below the $60-a-barrel level for the first time since late July. "Floridians are experienced at dealing with hurricanes -- maybe too experienced -- and they are above sea level, so I don't expect Wilma to cause the same unfortunate devastation as Katrina and Rita," says Ken Tower, chief market strategist at CyberTrader. The residual effects of the two previous hurricanes may still be felt in the October consumer confidence numbers, which are set for release on Tuesday. Economists expect a rebound to 90 from September's reading of 86.6. "Consumer confidence will be a major factor driving next week's trading," says John Silvia, chief economist at Wachovia. "After being hit by hurricanes and energy cost increases, the American public has got to be wondering when the bad news will end." Existing-home sales for September also will be reported Tuesday. The market is expecting 7.2 million homes to have changed hands, down from 7.29 million in August. September's new-home sales figures will arrive on Thursday. Analysts expect 1.25 million additions, compared with 1.24 million the prior month. "Keep an eye on home sales," says Windham's Mendelsohn. "All the current talk in Washington about limiting mortgage loan deductibility has the potential to really shake up the housing market, which has been underpinning the economy." Durable goods data for September will be released on Wednesday. According to First Call, the average estimate is for a drop of 1%, a major swing from August's jump of 3.3%. "This will be the first sign we have about capital spending after the hurricanes and the strike at Boeing ( BA)," says Milton Ezrati, chief economist at Lord Abbett, who says capital spending is essential to maintain the country's economic momentum. The advanced third-quarter GDP report arrives on Friday, with the market expecting solid growth of 3.5%. Nevertheless, all eyes will be on the GDP core deflator. "The Fed targets a PCE core deflator between 1.75% and 2.0% and the current year-over-year reading is 1.9%," says Randy Diamond, sales trader at Miller Tabak. "The Fed has stated their unhappiness with the current level at the upper end of range." Don't expect a gaggle of Fed members to voice their displeasure publicly next week, however. Monday will be the last day the Fed can discuss monetary policy ahead of the FOMC's Nov. 1 meeting.
|Companies Reporting Earnings in Next Week|
| Monday |
| Tuesday |
| Wednesday |
| Thursday |
| Friday |
|Cendant (CD:NYSE)||Akamai Technologies (AKAM:Nasdaq)||Anheuser-Busch (BUD:NYSE)||AutoNation (AN:NYSE)||Archer Daniels Midland (ADM:NYSE)|
|Johnson Controls (JCI:NYSE)||Amazon.com (AMZN:Nasdaq)||Callaway Golf (ELY:NYSE)||KLA-Tencor (KLAC:Nasdaq)||Avon (AVP:NYSE)|
|Texas Instruments (TXN:NYSE)||Ameritrade (AMTD:Nasdaq)||ConocoPhillips (COP:NYSE)||MetLife (MET:NYSE)||Overstock.com (OSTK:Nasdaq)|
|Merck (MRK:NYSE)||Northrop Grumman (NOC:NYSE)||Zimmer (ZMH:NYSE)||Exxon Mobil (XOM:NYSE)||Chevron (CVX:NYSE)|