5 Storied Stocks To Watch This Week

 |  Includes: DNDN, FSLR, GMCR, HLF, MCPIQ
by: Bill Maurer

While a majority of the big names have reported earnings already, earnings season is far from over. In fact, some of the biggest individual earnings reports are yet to come. There are several investor favorites, including many battleground stocks, the ones investors love to debate, that are left to report. In fact, a number of them are reporting this week. Here are five storied stocks to watch this week.

Dendreon Corporation (NASDAQ:DNDN)

The maker of the prostate cancer treatment Provenge will report its second-quarter earnings after the bell on Monday. Analysts are currently looking for revenues of $85.78 million, which would be a 73.1% growth over the prior-year period. Analysts call for a loss of 59 cents per share, compared to 79 cents in the prior-year period. Excluding adjustments, Dendreon has missed earnings numbers in three of the past four quarters.

Dendreon shares are down about 18% on the year. However, Dendreon traded as high as $17.04 on February 7th, but closed at just $6.24 this past Friday. Recent rumors of a potential buyout failed to lift shares this week. Dendreon has been one of the biggest roller coaster stocks of the past few years. Analysts were very concerned over Provenge's future after the Q1 report, one of the reasons why shares have been knocked down so much. A good report this week will ease those fears and should send shares back towards the $10 level. However, a bad report, and the 52-week low of $5.69 will be definitely taken out. In that case, I would think that $5, perhaps even $4, could be tested.

Herbalife Ltd. (NYSE:HLF)

The global nutrition company will report its second-quarter results Monday after the bell, with a conference call scheduled for Tuesday morning. Analysts are looking for an 11.3% rise in quarterly revenues to $979 million. Earnings per share are expected to rise from $0.88 in the prior period to $0.96. Herbalife has beaten analyst expectations handily in each of the past four quarters.

I haven't covered Herbalife as much as some other names, but investors will be looking to see if this stock can bounce back. If you go back to early May, right after the company reported its Q1 results, the stock took a nasty plunge after some questions were asked by hedge fund titan David Einhorn. Einhorn is known for questioning some names and then seeing their stocks fall (one of which I'll get into later in this article). Herbalife shares fell from the low $70s to the low $40s, and closed Friday just under $54. I figure that some analysts will bring up some of the Einhorn questions on the call in some matter. So while this stock will move in after-hours on Monday, expect the real action to occur Tuesday morning. Does this stock recover towards the low $70s, or will it retest those low $40s?

Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Inc. (NASDAQ:GMCR)

Another one of David Einhorn's favorites will report Wednesday after the bell. Analysts are currently expecting a 21.8% rise in revenues to $873.83 million for the fiscal third quarter. On the earnings front, analysts are expecting a one penny rise to $0.50.

When I analyzed where Green Mountain stood in June, analysts were expecting about $2 million less in revenues. Now, when Green Mountain guided for the quarter, it gave a range of $861 to $897 million, with a midpoint of $879 million. If the company hits that midpoint, it will be ahead of analyst expectations. However, this is a company that has missed tremendously in two of the past three quarters in terms of revenues.

In terms of earnings, Green Mountain forecast a range of $0.48 to $0.53. With expectations now at $0.50, the company could easily match that number. Last quarter, Green Mountain matched expectations despite missing tremendously on revenues. Green Mountain's earnings have fared better in relation to expectations than its revenues have.

Green Mountain shares stand just $1 off their 52-week low of $17.11. That's a far cry from the 52-week high of $116, and even the $50 it was trading at going into last quarter's earnings report. This is an incredibly important report for the company. It lowered guidance for the full year at the last report, and it better maintains the guidance here at the least. If the company can maintain or even raise guidance, shares should rebound. But if it misses again, watch out below. Green Mountain's growth has been in question for several quarters now. One more bad report will put the future of this company in serious doubt and could send shares all the way down to the single digits.

First Solar, Inc. (NASDAQ:FSLR)

The troubled solar giant will also report results after the bell on Wednesday. Current estimates call for a 53.5% rise in revenues to $817.59 million. Earnings per share are expected to rise 30%, from $0.70 to $0.91.

As I discussed a few weeks ago, First Solar is due for a revenue rebound. First Solar widely missed revenue expectations last quarter as certain revenues were not recognized. They are expected to be recognized in this quarter, which is why the forecast is for a 50% plus gain. Margins are expected to come down a little bit, which is why earnings per share are not forecast to rise at the same rate as revenues are expected to.

First Solar closed Friday at $14.50, just $3 off the 52-week low. However, this is a name that traded for more than $165 less than 18 months ago, and more than $100 less than a year ago. If First Solar can prove that conditions in the industry are improving, shares could start to rebound. However, this is a company that has lost $10 per share in the last two quarters on restructuring and other charges, and one that has missed earnings expectations in the past four quarters. This from a company that used to crush expectations. First Solar raised its 2012 earnings per share forecast at its last report, something analysts and investors didn't buy given the large Q1 miss. We'll find out this week whether the EPS raise was justified or if it was just management trying to keep shares propped up for just a little longer.

Molycorp, Inc. (MCP)

The rare earth mineral producer and processor will report Thursday after the bell. Current estimates call for a 16% rise in quarterly revenues to $115.56 million. However, earnings per share are forecast to plunge from $0.52 to $0.08.

Molycorp surprised everyone when it announced an acquisition of Neo Material Technologies a few months ago. Molycorp paid $1.3 billion, a price some think was too steep. Molycorp took on half of that, $650 million, in debt to finance the purchase. That has really expanded Molycorp's liabilities, and with the added interest costs, analysts have forecasted lower profits going forward.

Molycorp is a high-growth name. Revenues are expected to rise by more than 75% this year and more than 110% next year. However, Molycorp has had a tough time meeting expectations, so every time it reports, analysts end up taking down expectations. Back in September of 2011, analysts were expecting $4.03 in earnings this year (versus $1.70 in 2011). Current estimates call for just $1.11, and 2013 numbers have been taken down in stride as well. I've always said that shares of this company will soar if Molycorp can hit its marks, but over the past year, it just hasn't been able to.

Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

Additional disclosure: Author has no positions in any names mentioned, and will not before earnings, but may initiate long or short positions on any of these names involved post-earnings.