The Last Week Of March: A Look Ahead

by: CRG Research

With the month of March coming to an end and the earnings season in a few weeks, there are a few companies releasing earnings this week, as also economic data releases, that are sure to move markets.

Corporate Earnings

There are no major US earnings announcements this week. However, there are companies reporting that deserve our attention. Reporting this week is McCormick & Co Inc. (NYSE:MKC), Walgreen Co (WAG), Family Dollar Stores Inc. (NYSE:FDO), Mosaic Co. (NYSE:MOS), Best Buy Co Inc. (NYSE:BBY), Movado Group Inc. (NYSE:MOV), and PEP Boys (PBY).

Investors will be scrutinizing McCormick's income statement for y/y increases in sales and net income. In addition, a gross profit margin above 42 percent of sales would suggest that cost of revenue increases (should they continue) have been passed on to consumers. Net income as a percentage of net revenue above 10 percent would be welcomed by investors.

Walgreen's margin's are stable; investors will be watching to see if this trend continues. Sequential top-line growth would be welcomed. Net income may not exceed last year's net income for the period being reported. Walgreen has been trading in a narrow range since October. The report could be the catalyst that sparks a rally or decline.

Economic data moving markets

  • EUR - German Ifo Business Climate

Click to enlarge

German Ifo Business Climate is rising, above the rising 3-month simple moving average and above the flat 6-month moving average. German Ifo Business Climate is expected to continue to increase.

  • US -Bernanke Speech
  • US -Pending Home Sales m/m
  • US -CB Consumer Confidence

CB consumer confidence is rising, above the rising 3-month simple moving average and above the rising 6-month simple moving average. CB consumer confidence is expected to continue to increase.

  • US -Durable Goods Orders m/m
  • US -Unemployment Claims
  • US -Final GDP q/q
  • US -Core PCE Price Index m/m
  • US -Personal Spending m/m
  • US -Personal Income m/m
  • US -Chicago PMI

Chicago PMI is trending higher slowly with PMI above the rising 3- and 6-month simple moving averages.

  • US -Revised UoM Consumer Sentiment

Investors will be scrutinizing the news out of Europe and the Middle East, while watching European markets and oil prices. Investors will also be paying attention to news out of China, which could impact gold priced in US dollars.

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