Saturday, April 22, 2017

The Big Week Ahead

There is a big week ahead in your portfolio-thingy.  Over in France, they are having an election on Sunday.  Yes, Sunday.  The French are goofy.  I suppose they expect everyone to vote, or something? One wonders what would have happened if we had a full turnout last November, instead of electing someone with 49% of the vote with barely 60% turnout.  But, I digress.

Our stock market will react - however it will - to the results on Sunday night.  Sadly, there is nothing you or I can do about it, so we are forced to grimace and bear it.  But, these are the facts:
  • Like the Brexit vote several months ago, the markets may tank, and you will have an opportunity to jump in and buy quality stocks at a discount. Or ...
  • Like last November, the market will react positively, and you will have an opportunity to hold onto whatever you own and watch it increase in value over ... nothing, really.  That's the beauty of the stock market.
Meanwhile, many big companies are reporting earnings on Tuesday.  Among them, Caterpillar, DuPont, CocaCola, Eli Lilly, McDonald's, 3M, and Chipotle.  They are all big market movers, and one suspects that any or all of them will have the power to move the general market one way or another.
McDonald's has had a big run.  Whether or not you support their ideals, the stock is up about 20% year-to-date, so it doesn't matter if you do not care for burgers and fries, because somebody does.  It's difficult to bet against this behemoth, and I'd say that you shouldn't either.

Coca-Cola has been floundering, and they are struggling to re-discover themselves in the face of increased taxes on sugary soft drinks and the backlash on that.  I'd guess that they will have found a way around that, and the stock will continue its upward trend.

Chipotle has been struggling to find its footing after their health scares almost two years ago.  The public's memory is short, and this quarter should be the one that says whether or not they have forgotten.  As for me, I've never eaten at one, so I don't know what you expect.

On Wednesday, Twitter reports.  Stockholders are anxious, and waiting for management to figure out a way to monetize something that almost everybody uses but does not pay for. Something tells me that our long, free ride is coming to an end.  They have to find some way to monetize the content, and it's a matter of time before it starts costing us money to stay in.

On Thursday, Southwest Airlines reports.  They might have something to say about the debacle at United, but there is probably enough positive stuff to talk about without talking about that nonsense.  More importantly, Under Armor, Amazon, Microsoft, Domino's, and Google (Alphabet) report.  Hey - can somebody get together and separate this stuff into different days? My attention span is suffering.

Amazon is a giant force in retail, but I think they might miss earnings. It's about time, don't you think?  This may present a buying opportunity for those of you who are looking for one.
As much as I love Baltimore-based Under Armor and its products, the stock is over-valued, and I think there may still be a better opportunity to own it.  Listen to what they say, because I think it may be a soft quarter and push the stock price back closer to the low-teens where it will be buyable.
Domino's is technology disguised as pizza.  Yeah, they sell pizza, but its an emoji away from your home. other firms are struggling to catch up.  I'd guess that their market dominance will continue for a while.  It's just pizza, but there is little competition.  Your local shop cannot keep up.

On Friday, General Motors reports.  This is the first of the big auto-makers.  Ford's earnings will come on the following Friday.  The best guess is that the auto stocks have about ten percent left to drop, which is odd, since Ford already trades at an obscenely low multiple.  Go figure.  It just proves that it doesn't mean that making a great product translates into stock appreciation.
Exxon-Mobil and Chevron also report on Friday.  Oil is in trouble, in spite of President Trump [cough] and his pro-drill stance.  It's still a supply and demand market, and oil prices may remain low until the summer.  You can buy these, but make sure to pick your spots.

Overall, this is a big week coming up.  If you have money put aside, several big names might go on sale either because of the French election or some misstep on earnings or ... some big brokerage house wanting to drive the price down by reading something into the earnings report.  It's up to you.

As for me, I'm sticking with the buy-buy-buy mantra.  It all evens-out in the end.  If you stick with good companies, your patience will be rewarded.



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