I’m looking for answers to two big questions that earnings from Amazon (AMZN) and Caterpillar (CAT) left us with last week. In the case of Amazon, where the company reported a slide in revenue growth after a big bump in sales due to everybody ordering everything on line during the Pandemic shutdown, the question is What is the actual sales growth trend once you remove all the plus and minuses from the Pandemic? This isn’t a question just for Amazon, of course. It’s important for figuring out the valuation of everything from Las Vegas hotel and casino play MGM Resorts International (MGM) to streaming champion Netflix (NFLX) to Starbucks (SBUX). The other question left hanging at the end of the week is whether or not we’re about to see a string of companies forecasting lower margins due to rising prices for raw materials. That was the takeaway message from Caterpillar’s (CAT) earnings report.
I hope it’s no surprise to you–I’ve been yammering away on this topic for the last two weeks after all–but next week is a big week for earnings from bellwether tech companies. The market reaction to those earnings will determine whether the current earnings based rally goes on for a while or if, instead, we get a sell on the news retreat. Tuesday, April 27, is the first big day with Apple (AAPL), Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), Alphabet (GOOG) and Microsoft (MSFT) all reporting.
The Standard & Poor’s 500 closed up 0.20% today, July 22. The Dow Jones Industrial Average squeezed out a 0.07% gain. But if you were looking for bigger upside moves, turn your eyes to the technology sector.
Today investors and traders ran to buy all the re-opening, post-vaccine recovery, cyclical stocks that they dumped yesterday. Macy’s (M) is up 4.29% as of 3:30 p.m. New York time after plunging 4.90% yesterday. Amusement park operator Cedar Fair (FUN) is up 4.12%. Cyclical Dupont (DD) is up 1.34% after closing down 4.46% yesterday. Carnival Cruise (CCL) is ahead 7.83% today after dropping 5.74% yesterday. It’s as if the market has decided that the really scary upward trend in new infections from the spread of the Delta variant is done with and over. Pandemic yesterday. No pandemic today.. The figures from the pandemic front say otherwise. The 14-day change in new cases as of July 19 is 198%. The 14-day change in new deaths is 44%.
Today, Monday, July 19, stocks accelerated their retreat from the end of last week on fears that a fourth wave of the pandemic, fueled by the Delta variant, will crush hopes that the economy is headed back to normal. As of the close New York the Standard & Poor’s 500 was down 1.59% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average was lower by 2.09%. The NASDAQ Composite was off 1.06% and the NASDAQ 100 had dropped 0.90%. The small cap Russell 2000 had fallen 1.51% and the iShares MSCI Emerging Markets ETF (EEM) was down 1.68%. For the day at least you can see the market’s fears accurately reflected in the list of stocks falling most heavily.
Investors and traders will be looking to the first batch of earnings from big banks on Tuesday and Wednesday to answer two big questions: 1. Will earnings show the huge 65% year over year growth now expected by Wall Street analysts? 2. Will investors and traders sell on the news or push stocks higher on hoped for more economic (and earnings growth) to come? But I think w’ll have to wait until the week of July 27 to get answers to those queries.
Friday’s market action argues that investors and traders are looking to buy shares of Apple, Amazon, Microsoft–you know the usual suspects–ahead of what looks like a blowout earnings season that will start on July 13 when JPMorgan Chase (JPM) reports before the market open.
Remember way back at the beginning of last week? That is before the Federal Reserve signaled on Wednesday that more of the members of its Open Market Committee were thinking about raising interest rates sooner than previously expected. Re-opening stocks, value stocks, and cyclical stocks led the market. The small cap Russell 2000 was the best performing of the major indexes. Well, they’re back
Yesterday, growth stocks climbed in the face of signals from the Federal Reserve on Wednesday that interest rates increase were coming sooner–as soon as the end of 2022–than expected. That seemed puzzling. May be, one line of thought (mine) had it, investors and traders decided that growth stocks would outrun any increase in interest rates that might take place in 2022 or 2023. Today, we got the selling that many had expected yesterday
Yesterday’s Fed projection of an earlier than expected interest rate increase gives a boost today to tech growth stories
The Standard & Poor’s 500 was basically flat with a loss of just 0.04% as of the close today. If you want ACTION!!! you have to look elsewhere: To the NASDAQ Composite, which was up 0.87% as of the close and to the small cap Russell 2000, which was down 1.18% at the finish.
I’m starting up my videos on JubakAM.com again–this time using YouTube as a platform. The twenty-second YouTube video “Don’t Panic: 3 Picks for This Rotation” went up today.
Today, April 21, as of 3 p.m. New York time, the major indexes were on track to break their three-day losing streak. At 3 p.m. the Standard & Poor’s 500 was ahead 0.65% and the Dow Jones Industrial Average had gained 0.74%. The NASDAQ Composite was higher by 0.73% and the small cap Russell 2000 had moved up 1.94%. Why the big change in tone from earlier in the week?