24 April, 2008

Earnings season continues, Markets head higher Thursday

As the earnings numbers continued to be reported, several bell-weather names were in focus Thursday. The markets shrugged off early selling by turning into "mid-day rally mode" before closing the day with between .6% and 1% gains for the major indices.

North of the border, the selling in commodities and industrials was somewhat offset by a rally in the banking sector but the TSX found itself lower by 3 quarters of a percentage point.

Starbucks (SBUX) was slashed after-hours Wednesday after coming out and lowering full year profit expectations, the company lost over 10% as a weakening US economy is plaguing sales of its gourmet coffees.

Amazon (AMZN) reported another strong quarter, with over 30% earnings growth, but the stock was lower by 4%, as expectations for growth going forward were highly over-valued. The company sits with a 35 Forward P/E for 2009 earnings, at 51 Forward P/E for 2008 and an almost 70 trailing P/E ratio. The company is poised to deliver significant growth still, but Investors needed to for the moment, pause the momentum.

Biggest news of the trading day however, was Ford's (F) shocking profitable quarter. Automotive sales were strong worldwide, and the turnaround plans for the automotive giant seem to be going ahead of schedule. Analysts were expecting another quarterly loss, and as such Ford shares rose almost 12% on the posted $100Million profit.

Disclosure: Author owns SBUX

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