Welcome to Seeking Alpha's Stocks to Watch - a preview of key events scheduled for the next week. Follow this account and turn the e-mail alert on to receive this article in your inbox every Saturday morning.
The stock market could get a bit of a test as traders return back to their desks following the low-volume, high-vacation dog days of August. Sure, there is plenty of tariff drama between the U.S. and its trading partners to sort out, but valuation questions are also on the radar after a recent stretch of new highs for major indexes pushed trailing price-earnings ratios over historic norms. Looking at a forward view of earnings estimates, however, the Dow Jones Industrial Average trades with a PE ratio of 16.6 and the S&P 500 Index trades at 17.7. Stretching out valuation a bit are the Nasdaq 100 with a forward PE ratio of 21.3 and the Russell 2000 at 27.0. On the same topic, what do we think of Amazon (NASDAQ:AMZN) at $2K and Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) at a $1.1T market cap. While the earnings season in the rear-view mirror, there's a huge number of corporate conferences next week to keep investors on their toes. On the macro calendar, it's time to hear from the Labor Department on jobs again with the Employment Situation report due out on September 7. Economists expect nonfarm payrolls to be up to 187K from 157K a month ago and for the unemployment rate to stay level at 3.9%. Average hourly earnings are forecast to be up 0.3% M/M and 2.8% Y/Y, marks that shouldn't send off any alarm bells. Enjoy Monday off for the Labor Day holiday, the action ramps back up on Tuesday.
Notable earnings reports: Workday (NASDAQ:WDAY) and Coupa Software (NASDAQ:COUP) on September 4; Ctrip.com (NASDAQ:CTRP), RH (NYSE:RH) and Guidewire (NYSE:GWRE) on September 5; Broadcom (NASDAQ:AVGO), Palo Alto Networks (NYSE:PANW), GameStop (NYSE:GME), Navistar (NYSE:NAV), Marvell Technologies (NASDAQ:MRVL) and Barnes & Noble (NYSE:BKS) on September 6; Genesco (NYSE:GCO) on September 7. See Seeking Alpha's Earnings Calendar for the complete list of earnings reporters.
Twitter: Twitter (NYSE:TWTR) CEO Jack Dorsey is scheduled to testify before the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the Senate Intelligence Committee on September 5. Facebook's (NASDAQ:FB) Sheryl Sandberg is also expected to face the panels, while Google (GOOGL, GOOG) is still deciding what exec will make the trek to D.C. President Trump has issued broad criticism of social media sites such as Twitter, Google and Facebook – although specific evidence supporting claims of algorithm-fixing haven't been found by researchers.
IPO lockup expirations: Bioxcel Therapeutics (NASDAQ:BTAI) on September 5.
Analyst quiet period expirations: Mesa Air (NASDAQ:MESA), ElectraMaccanica Vehicles (NASDAQ:SOLO), Amalgamated Bank (NASDAQ:AMAL), Pacific City Financial (NASDAQ:PCB) and Vaccinex (NASDAQ:VCNX) on September 4. Mesa could be the most interesting of the bunch, with the airline stock trading above its $12 pricing level and the sector back in favor with investors.
Upcoming stocks split: The 1-for-20 reverse stock split by Jones Energy (OTC:JONE) of the company's outstanding Class A and Class B common stock becomes effective after the market closes on September 7. "We continue to work towards improving our operations and right sizing our balance sheet to create value for all Jones Energy stakeholders," updates the company on its track forward.
U.S. auto sales: Manufacturers report on U.S. sales on August 1. Edmunds expects U.S. auto sales to increase 1.2% Y/Y in July to 1.497M units. The expectation for a monthly increase is tied primarily to a weak comparison to a year ago when Hurricane Harvey impacted Texas. Edmunds forecasts an estimated seasonally adjusted annual rate of 16.8M. August forecast by automaker - General Motors (NYSE:GM) -8.5% to 252K, Toyota (NYSE:TM) +0.5% to 228K, Ford (NYSE:F) -1.8% to 205K, Fiat Chrysler (NYSE:FCAU) +15.0% to 202K, Honda (NYSE:HMC) +2.5% to 150K, Nissan (OTCPK:NSANY) +11.1% to 120K, Hyundai/Kia (OTCPK:HYMLF) +3.0% at 111K, Volkswagen (VLKAY) +3.1% to 53K.
NFL: The NFL season opens on September 6 with the Super Bowl champion Philadelphia Eagles hosting the Atlanta Falcons to follow on the first full slate of Saturday college football games today. Analysts have been pointing to the start of the college and pro football season as the first real indication of the upside potential for casino operators, bookmaking companies and gaming platform developers off the recent legalization of sports betting in several states. Expect to hear some early reports on casino traffic and the popularity of in-game betting as the football season launches. On the legislative front, Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer and retiring Senator Orrin Hatch have both said they will push for federal sports betting legislation, although the path for full approval is seen as long and winding. Some of the notable companies looking to cash in with sports betting include GVC Holdings (OTCPK:GMVHF), Boyd Gaming (NYSE:BYD), Caesars Entertainment (NASDAQ:CZR), Betfair (OTC:PDYPF), DraftKings (DRAFT), Churchill Downs (NASDAQ:CHDN), Fanduel (DUEL), International Game Technology (NYSE:IGT), Stars Group (NASDAQ:TSG), William Hill (OTCPK:WIMHY) and MGM Resorts (NYSE:MGM).
Spotlight on semis: Semiconductor stocks will be in focus next week when the Citi Global Technology Conference kicks off on September 6-7. Analysts think that the next several weeks could be critical for the sector as investors assess if slower order growth rates are macro-related are a sign of something larger. Companies due to give presentations at the Citi tech affair include Adobe (NASDAQ:ADBE), Lam Research (NASDAQ:LRCX), Xilinx (NASDAQ:XLNX), On Semiconductor (NASDAQ:ON), Micron (NASDAQ:MU), Texas Instruments (NASDAQ:TXN) and Qualcomm (NASDAQ:QCOM).
Short report: The list of stocks with a high percentage of short interest to total float could be of interest next week as overall market trading volumes shoot back up. Stocks to keep an eye on include Citius Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:CTXR), PolarityTE (COOL), Camping World (NYSE:CWH), Gogo (NASDAQ:GOGO), Akcea Therapeutics (NASDAQ:AKCA), MiMedZ Group (OTC:MDXG), Turtle Beach (NASDAQ:HEAR), Match Group (NASDAQ:MTCH), Overstock.com (NASDAQ:OSTK), GNC Holdings (NYSE:GNC), AMC Entertainment (NYSE:AMC), iRobot (NASDAQ:IRBT), Hibbett Sports (NASDAQ:HIBB), Dropbox (NASDAQ:DBX), Blue Apron (NYSE:APRN), Dillard's (NYSE:DDS), Revlon (NYSE:REV) and La Jolla Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ:LJPC) for volatility.
Cowen Global Transportation Conference: Transports get the spotlight at the conference in Boston on September 5-6. Presenting companies include Greenbrier (NYSE:GBX), Alaska Air Group (NYSE:ALK), JetBlue (NASDAQ:JBLU), United Airlines (NASDAQ:UAL), CSX (NASDAQ:CSX), Delta Air Lines (NYSE:DAL), USA Truck (NASDAQ:USAK), Norfolk Southern (NYSE:NSC), American Airlines Group (NASDAQ:AAL), Hawaiian Holdings (NASDAQ:HA), Kansas City Southern (NYSE:KSU), Mesa Air, Spirit Airlines (NYSE:SAVE), SkyWest (NASDAQ:SKYW) and Daseke (NASDAQ:DSKE).
Goldman Sachs Global Annual Retailing Conference: Notables presenting at the retail gathering at the Plaza Hotel in New York City on September 5-6 include Wayfair (NYSE:W), Dollar General (NYSE:DG), Party City (NYSE:PRTY), Lowe's (NYSE:LOW), Home Depot (NYSE:HD), Floor & Decor (NYSE:FND), Tractor Supply (NASDAQ:TSCO), Macy's (NYSE:M), Dick's Sporting Goods (NYSE:DKS), Nordstrom (NYSE:JWN), Macy's (M), Urban Outfitters (NASDAQ:URBN), Blue Apron, Crocs (NASDAQ:CROX) and Ulta Beauty (NASDAQ:ULTA).
M&A tidbits: The preliminary proxy in the PepsiCo (NASDAQ:PEP) acquisition of SodaStream (NASDAQ:SODA) is due out on September 4. T-Mobile (NASDAQ:TMUS) and Sprint (NYSE:S) have been requested answer FCC queries on the planned merger by September 5. KapStone Paper and Packaging Corp (NYSE:KS) and WestRock (NYSE:WRK) shareholders vote on the merger of the two companies on September 6.
TechCrunch Disrupt San Francisco: While startups are the headliners at the annual event, new developments in artificial intelligence, augmented/virtual reality, blockchain, biotech, gaming and robotics will hold interest for a huge number of publicly-traded companies. One of the more interesting sessions planned is on the commercial space industry, with execs from Shasta Ventures, Bessemer Venture Partners and DCVC all planning to talk.
SpaceX: A SpaceX (SPACE) Falcon 9 rocket will launch the Telstar 18 VANTAGE communications satellite from Cape Canaveral on September 8. The Telstar 18 VANTAGE satellite is targeted to provide broadcast, enterprise and government communications services over parts of India, China, Mongolia and Southeast Asia.
Box office: Warner Bros. (NYSE:TWX) film Crazy Rich Asians is expected to star again during the extended Labor Day weekend. The comedy is forecast to kick up another $24M to take its overall box office tally to over $108M A $24M weekend for the film would rank its third on the all-time Labor Day BO list behind Halloween ($31M) in 2007 and The Sixth Sense ($29M) in 1999. Another film hoping to create buzz is MGM's Nazi war criminal drama Operation Finale, which is predicted to pull in around $10M during the extended six-day debut period.
Barron's mentions: New changes to how stocks are classified by industry sector will bounce some information-technology and consumer-discretionary names into a new communication-services sector. Alphabet and Facebook are two that will make the switch out of technology. The rebalancing could have a significant impact on tech ETFs as they sort out their holdings. The new trade deal puts Kansas City Southern on a better track, according to Avi Salzman. Meanwhile, Ben Levisohn puzzles over why Best Buy (NYSE:BBY) can't get any respect from analysts despite a strong earnings track record. In the activist spotlight, Third Point is seen prepping for a proxy fight at Campbell Soup (NYSE:CPB).
Sources: Nasdaq, EDGAR, Reuters, Bloomberg.
Editor's Note: This article covers one or more microcap stocks. Please be aware of the risks associated with these stocks.