NEW YORK (TheStreet) -- Welcome to bizarro world where down is up and up is down; welcome to earnings season. Welcome to a world where companies are rewarded for poor performance, punished for good performance and where pundits are wrong much of the time. Yesterday was "opposite day" in true George Costanza fashion.First, take Gannett ( GCI), a name that has been putting up some pretty good numbers the past few years, after a rough 2008-2009, but the market has been slow to warm up to it.
Yesterday, the company announced good first quarter numbers, with revenue rising 1.6%, hitting the consensus estimate, and 37 cents earnings per share beating the consensus by two cents. All segments but advertising -- down 4.5% -- showed nice revenue gains, with broadcasting up 8.7%, and publishing circulation up 8.6%. The market promptly rewarded Gannett with a 5% haircut, on a day that the S&P 500 was up more than 1%. What were they expecting, a dividend increase? GCI data by YCharts
So how did Mr. Market react? With a 1% up day for the company. Now, as a shareholder, I am not unhappy about that, but I do recognize the irony. New CEO Joe Magnacca, who helped turn around the Duane Reade drugstore chain, definitely has his work cut out for him. RadioShack still trades at just 1.22 times net current asset value. RSH data by YCharts
Ahead of the announcement, during regular trading, Apple shares were up about 1.9%. After the announcement, shares rose as high as $429.90, a 6% gain, in after-hours trading, as euphoria set in with some investors regarding Apple's announced dividend and share buyback increase. That optimism quickly faded, and this morning's pre-market trading find's Apple in the $403 range, down $3 from yesterday's close. So much for expectations for a big move, either way. This stuff never gets old. At the time of publication the author held long positions GCI, RSH. Follow @JonMHellerCFA This article is commentary by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.