Earnings season is underway, but it's in the "slow dribble phase," CNBC's Jim Cramer said Friday.
The "Mad Money" host has just three earnings reports circled on his calendar in the week ahead, along with two analyst meetings he will be tuned in to.
He warned that the stock market has a number of headwinds coming out of Washington, D.C., to deal with, including the U.S.-China trade war, a trade agreement with Canada and Mexico that would replace NAFTA and the Federal Reserve.
Trade officials are scheduled to resume talks later in the week, and the Chinese economy is one major focus of the host's game plan for the trading week of Oct. 7.
"The week after next will be insane," Cramer said. "Better batten down the hatches and get ready for companies to adjust their numbers going into a new round of tariffs that … they're most likely unprepared for."
The U.S. released a Purchasing Managers Index reading, which serves as a gauge for manufacturing, that disappointed investors earlier this week. China plans to reveal its own data on Monday, which will come days before both countries hold trade negotiations later that week.
"We don't know how much the Chinese fiddle with their own figures, but expect for them to be accurate directionally, at least — meaning they're a good way to detect some trends even if the absolute numbers [are] dubious," Cramer said. "I'm betting the Chinese PMI will be as bad as the Communist Party lets it be, which is probably not going to be so good."
Domino's Pizza is slated to report earnings before the market opens. Emerging third-party delivery services have put up a challenge to the pizza franchise, who runs its own delivery operations. In a note, Wedbush said near-term sentiment is "overly negative" and assessed the current intensity of third-party delivery's intrusion as "unsustainable."
Analyst consensus for the third-quarter report expects revenue to grow 4.8% to $824 million and earnings of $2.07 per share.
Levi Strauss plans to reveal quarterly results after the market closes. The jeans business has been a tough category as of late, Cramer said.
Wall Street forecasts 28 cents profit per share on $1.4 billion in sales for the August quarter.
Mortgage data will be released.
"These have been real standouts of late, and every time they've been good they move the whole housing sector up, led by Lennar," Cramer said. Lower "mortgage rates make housing stocks en fuego."
Delta Air Lines will present its third-quarter earnings before the opening bell. Analyst estimates are $2.27 earnings per share and $12.6 billion of revenue, an increase of 5.5% from the year prior.
"The transports in general have been an outrageously bad place to be. I don't expect Delta's quarter to change anyone's mind," Cramer said.
Hormel Foods will host an analyst meeting. Cramer said that the Spam producer has been "reenergized" through the acquisitions of Skippy's, Applegate Farms and Justin's.
"It's been a long time since Hormel was just Spam," he said. "I think you can buy it ahead of the meeting" if it pulls back.
Wendy's will hold an analyst meeting. Cramer expects management to talk about its move into the breakfast business, which was met with negative sentiment on the market.
"I bet the meeting moves the needle back," the host said. "I'd be a buyer ahead of the analyst meeting."