Investors Focused On Cyprus, Fed Ahead Of Wednesday Session
Wall Street's winning ways are being waylaid by uncertainty over the situation in Cyprus, where lawmakers have rejected the terms of a proposed EU bailout. However, the reaction has been muted, and the Dow's small gain Tuesday means that it still has not had a 3-day losing streak in 2013. The S&P 500, however, was unable to avoid its first 3-day skid since late December, with a Fed statement and a Ben Bernanke news conference looming in the day ahead.
In keeping with the Fed's new schedule, the statement that follows the meeting of Fed policymakers will be released at 2pm ET, along with their latest economic projections. Chairman Bernanke's news conference will begin at 2:30pm ET.
There are no government economic reports out today to occupy investors ahead of the Fed events, although we will see the regular weekly reports on mortgage applications from the Mortgage Bankers Association (7 a.m. ET) and on oil and gasoline inventories from the Energy Department (10:30 a.m. ET).
Today's earnings calendar has some prominent names on an otherwise short list: FedEx (FDX), General Mills (GIS), and Lennar (LEN) will issue quarterly numbers this morning, while Oracle (ORCL), Jabil Circuit (JBL), and Pacific Sunwear (PSUN) will be out with their reports after today's closing bell.
Adobe Systems (ADBE) leads our list of stocks to watch, with the software maker reporting fiscal first quarter profit of $0.35 per share, four cents above estimates. Revenue also topped analyst forecasts. Adobe's earnings were 65 percent lower than the prior year, as the company transitions to subscription services from packaged software, but they still beat the Street's expectations.
Williams-Sonoma (WSM) earned $1.34 per share for the fourth quarter, five cents above estimates, with revenues also beating consensus. The home goods retailer saw strong online sales during the quarter, and was also helped by a reduction in discounting.
Francesca's Holdings (FRAN) beat estimates by three cents with fourth quarter profit of $0.33 per share. Revenue of $86.7 million was also well above forecasts of $78 million. The women's clothing retailer specializes in affordable apparel for customers aged 18-35.
ConocoPhillips (COP) has made what it calls a "significant" oil discovery in a recently drilled Gulf of Mexico Well. Conoco has a 30 percent stake in the well, as does Anadarko Petroleum (APC).
JPMorgan Chase (JPM) will return $546 million to former customers of collapsed trading firm MF Global under a tentative agreement struck late Tuesday. The deal must still be approved by two judges. JPMorgan was the processor of the firm's securities trades.
Boeing (BA) customer All Nippon Airways reportedly wants cash from the jet maker rather than future discounts as compensation for the grounding of Boeing's 787 Dreamliner. Reuters quotes a person familiar the Japanese airline's thinking, although a spokesman says nothing has been decided. ANA is the Boeing's biggest 787 customer.
General Electric (GE) may consider spinning off its GE Capital unit at some point in the future, according to CEO Jeff Immelt. However, he told industry leaders in Sydney, Australia that GE is not actively working on such a plan.