After a miserable four day stretch, markets were able to open higher yesterday, as Alcoa (AA) started off earnings season with a positive report. For the next few weeks, the biggest and most important companies in the country will be shedding light on their performance in what was the best first quarter in roughly 14 years. Investors are hoping for some optimism, as the past few days have seen the bull train derailed as selling pressures have mounted. That optimism will have to come from strong earnings, as it seems that European fears are starting to heat up yet again [see also Tech ETFs In Focus: Highlighting Some Hyper-Targeted Options].
Today will see earnings from tech giant Google (GOOG). The California-based firm ranks number one for both global and domestic internet traffic on Alexa, making it an enticing play. Google also is home to well-known subsidiaries like YouTube, AdMob, and DoubleClick. Investors will be taking a close look at new ventures from the search engine giant, as Google has been sporting a relatively young social network, Google Plus, and has been releasing details of augmented reality glasses that are sure to put a spin on your everyday life [see also Why Chinese Technology ETFs Are Crushing The Competition].
Analysts expectations peg EPS at 9.65 with revenues just over $8 billion after a rough miss last time around. "In the final three months of last year, Google's net revenue fell nearly $US300 million ($293 million), or 3 per cent, below analyst estimates. Adjusted earnings per share missed Wall Street's target by 10 per cent" writes the Financial Review. Investors will also be keeping a keen eye on the firm as Google saw an unexpected drop in advertising prices last year, sparking anxiety over future profitability. Google will report after the closing bell today, but those looking to make a play on the report will have to take positions prior to the end of the trading session, as the stock will likely gap upon opening Friday.
In light of this major earnings announcement, today's ETF to watch will be the DJ Internet Index Fund (FDN). This fund tracks companies that derive at least 50% of their revenues from the internet. Google comes in as the top holding, accounting for over 9.3% of the fund, while other big names like Amazon and eBay make an appearance. FDN has gained just over 10% on the year and will look to extend those gains with Google's earnings. FDN may seem some increased volume on the day from speculators and others looking to make a bet on earnings, but for those who have a strong opinion on Google's report, today will be the day to establish your position [see also Time To Buy VIX ETNs?].
Disclosure: No positions at time of writing.
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