Bulls Regain Footing On Wall Street
Wall Street's major averages seem to have recovered their positive footing for now, with gains in three straight sessions. The S&P 500 and Nasdaq are both coming off their best three-day stretch since early January, and the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq are now all positive for April once again.
The government will report March durable goods orders at 8:30 a.m. ET, with consensus forecasts calling for a decline of 2.9 percent following February's 5.6 percent gain.
Regular weekly reports out today include the Mortgage Bankers Association's look at mortgage applications at 7 a.m. ET, and the Energy Department's snapshot of oil and gasoline inventories at 10:30 a.m. ET.
The Treasury will sell $35 billion in 5-year notes today, with the results of that sale available shortly after 1 p.m. ET.
Dow components Procter & Gamble (PG) and Boeing (BA) highlight another busy morning for corporate earnings. Companies also set to report this morning include Ford (F), Whirlpool (WHR), Dr Pepper Snapple (DPS), General Dynamics (GD), Corning (GLW), Eli Lilly (LLY), Northrop Grumman (NOC), Sprint Nextel (S), WellPoint Health (WLP), Waste Management (WM), and Wyndham Worldwide (WYN). After-the-bell reports this afternoon include chipmakers Qualcomm (QCOM) and Xilinx (XLNX), along with Stryker Corp. (SYK), Citrix Systems (CTXS), Akamai (AKAM), and Aflac (AFL).
Apple (AAPL) leads our list of stocks to watch, as it reports fiscal second quarter profit of $10.09 per share, nine cents above estimates, with revenues also beating consensus. Apple also increased its quarterly dividend by 15 percent to $3.05 per share, and its stock program by $50 billion to a total of $60 billion. However, its projected current quarter revenues are below Street estimates.
AT&T (T) earned $0.64 per share for the first quarter, excluding certain items, in line with Wall Street estimates. Revenues were slightly below expectations, and although the profitability of the company's wireless unit rose, its customer additions did not keep pace with those of rival Verizon.
Yum Brands (YUM) earned $0.70 per share for the first quarter, ten cents above estimates, with revenues in line with forecasts. The parent of KFC, Taco Bell, and Pizza Hut also said the bird flu issue is continuing to negatively impact comparable store sales in China, but it reaffirmed its prior outlook for full year earnings.
Amgen (AMGN) reported first quarter profit of $1.96 per share, excluding certain items, 12 cents above estimates, but revenues were short of forecasts both overall and for many of its top-selling treatments.
Broadcom (BRCM) posted first quarter earnings of $0.65 per share, excluding certain items, nine cents above estimates, while revenues also exceeded consensus. The chipmaker sees the majority of its growth for 2013 coming from sales to manufacturers of smartphones.
FedEx (FDX) has been awarded a $10.5 billion, 7-year contract with the U.S. Postal Service to provide air transport within the U.S. for the service's Priority Mail and Express Mail. Its prior contract had been set to expire in September.
Juniper Networks (JNPR) reported first quarter profit of $0.21 per share, excluding certain items, in line with estimates. But the network equipment maker's second quarter forecast of $0.22 - $0.26 per share is below consensus, with weaker spending by the government and the financial services industry seen as the primary reasons.
Norfolk Southern (NSC) beat estimates by 24 cents with first quarter profit of $1.41 per share. The rail operator saw transport volumes increase despite weakness in coal shipping.
Panera Bread (PNRA) missed estimates by six cents with first quarter profit of $1.59 per share, excluding certain items, and the restaurant operator's revenues also fell short of Street estimates. Same-store sales were up 3.3 percent, short of the 4.2 percent consensus forecast.
Edwards Lifesciences (EW) lowered its full year forecast on slow sales of its transcatheter heart valves. Earnings for the first quarter came in at $0.72 per share, four cents shy of estimates.
VMware (VMW) beat estimates by four cents with first quarter profit of $0.74 per share, but the software maker also lowered its full year revenue guidance.
Toyota (TM) retained the number one spot in global vehicle sales during the first quarter, selling 2.43 million vehicles. General Motors (GM) was second at 2.36 million vehicles.