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Tuesday promises to be a big day in earnings, with a lot of volatility leading up to and after the companies report. I counted about 100 companies reporting and these are the biggest in technology.

All three report after the bell, so expect after hours to be busy and Wednesday to have opening gaps in price compared to the previous close. As can be expected coming into the earnings date, options are priced about as high as they typically get for all three.

All things being equal you may be well served to look at credit spreads instead of buying puts if you want downside protection. Using the proper ratios relative to the number of shares you have and downside protection desired you can have the "fear premium" work for you instead of costing you. Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) has been trending lower lately, but this appears to be more of a bargain hunter's paradise than a real shift in company value.

I am not a big fan of Chinese stocks due to what I consider a greater shareholder fiduciary risk. With that said, BIDU (NASDAQ:BIDU) makes it on a very short list of Chinese stocks I would consider "if" i was forced into picking one. I would still hedge the position by writing covered calls as a method of mitigating risk.

Juniper Networks is on tap to release last fiscal quarter's results after the closing bell on April 24, 2012.

Who They Are: Juniper Networks, Inc. designs, develops, and sells products and services that provide network infrastructure for networking requirements of service providers, enterprises, governments, and research and public sector organizations worldwide. The company was founded in 1996 and is headquartered in Sunnyvale, California. Juniper Networks trades an average of 8.4 million shares per day and has a marketcap of $11 Billion.

Book Value: $13.47
Float Short: 2.76%

What To Expect:

On average, 14 Analysts are expecting a drop of $-0.15 in earnings per share compared to last quarter's results of $0.28. The number to beat is $0.13 per share based on the estimated mean earnings.

Recent Stock and Valuation Performance:

In the last month, the stock has decreased in price -0.10%, with a change from a year ago of -46.69%.
When comparing to the S&P 500, the year to date difference is -6.34%. The short interest is relatively low at 2.76%.

Here are the last few quarters to get an idea how well they perform compared to estimates:

paid2trade.com
Reported earnings per share compared to the mean estimate. Differences are rounded.

Apple is scheduled to release last fiscal quarter's results after the closing bell on April 24, 2012. Apple trades an average of 25.8 million shares per day and has a marketcap of $547.7 Billion.

Book Value: $96.60
Float Short: 1.04%

What To Expect:

On average, 32 Analysts are expecting a drop of $-3.88 in earnings per share compared to last quarter's results of $13.87. Wall Street is expecting $9.99 per share based on earnings estimates. The latest analyst estimates are coming in between $8.46 and $11.80 per share.

Recent Stock and Valuation Performance:

The P/E ratio has been under pressure, as the current trailing twelve months P/E ratio is 16.7, while the forward P/E ratio is now 13.28. A falling PE ratio may signal a bargain for astute investors, or maybe time to move on.
In the last month, the stock has decreased in price -1.99%, with a one year change of 71.56%.
With a double digit gain compared to stocks in general, the stock shares did very well as compared to the overall stock market. When comparing to the S&P 500, the year up to date change is 32.48%.

The short interest is relatively low at 1.04%.

Here are the last few quarters to get an idea how well they perform compared to estimates:

paid2trade.com
Reported earnings per share compared to the mean estimate. Differences are rounded.

Baidu.com is nearing the of release last fiscal quarter's results after the closing bell on April 24, 2012. We can review how Baidu.com has executed for investors recently.

Who They Are: Baidu, Inc. provides Internet search services. The company offers a Chinese language search platform on its Website, Baidu.com; and a Japanese language search platform on its Website, Baidu.jp. The company was founded in 2000 and is headquartered in Beijing, China. Baidu.com trades an average of 5.4 million shares per day and has a market cap of $39.2 Billion.

Book Value: $6.95

What To Expect:

On average, 12 Analysts are expecting a drop of $-0.08 in earnings per share compared to last quarter's results of $0.92. The number to beat is $0.84 per share based on the estimated mean earnings.
Currently, $0.80 on the low end and $0.92 per share on the high side is what market participants are anticipating in the report.

Recent Stock and Valuation Performance:

The P/E ratio has been under pressure, as the current trailing twelve months P/E ratio is 48.9, while the forward P/E ratio is now 31.25. An upside earnings report may provide greater wind in the sails. In the last month, the stock has increased in price 0.71%, and moving in price -3.06% from one year ago. The stock has done very well as compared to the overall market. When comparing to the S&P 500, the year to date difference is 13.50%.

Here are the last few quarters to get an idea how well they perform compared to estimates:

paid2trade.com
Reported earnings per share compared to the mean estimate. Differences are rounded.

Disclaimer: Robert Weinstein uses information believed to be correct, but is not guaranteed and is not independently checked for accuracy You may wish to use this article as a starting point of your own research with your financial planner. Seeking Alpha, Edgar Online, Zacks and Yahoo Finance provides most of the data. paid2trade.com uses the "confirmed" symbols from earnings.com that believed to be of the most interest.

Source: Big Technology Reporting Earnings Tuesday