After Monday’s lackluster trade, due to the extended holiday week-end, stock market investors will be gearing up for the start of earnings season, which kicks off on Tuesday with 52 S&P 500 companies expected to report by the end of the week. Here are the most important factors to consider before trading on Tuesday.
Big Banks on Deck
Investor focus will be on the big Wall Street banks as J.P. Morgan Chase, Citigroup, Goldman Sachs and Wells Fargo are expected to report on Tuesday, Bank of America on Wednesday and Morgan Stanley on Thursday.
According to Reuters, “The big U.S. banks are expected to report a 1.2% decline in earnings due to falling interest rates, a raft of unsuccessful stock market floatation and trade tensions.”
FactSet is expecting S&P 500-financial company earnings to drop 2.6% this quarter, weighed down by the Federal Reserve lowering interest rates twice since July, which pressures bank’s main business of deposits and lending.
Overall Earnings Weakness
Reuters also said, “Overall, analysts are forecasting a 3.2% decline in profit for S&P 500 companies for the quarter from a year earlier, based on IBES data from Refinitiv.
Analysts at FactSet presented a more bearish outlook, saying as the season kicks into gear this week, S&P 500 firms are expected to report a 4.6% earnings decline over the same period a year ago. If the period ends up with a negative number, that will make three quarters in a row, the first time that’s happened in three years.
Quarterly Market Outlook
Analysts at Edward Jones are saying, “Stocks appear on track to finish the year strong, with the S&P 500 near a record high, despite a volatile past quarter during which slower global growth and trade tensions caused recession fears to spike.”
“Twists and turns on the U.S./China trade front continue to drive market swings, with stocks rising last week on optimism that both sides are looking at a phased approach to a trade deal, which was announced after market close on Friday.”
“This incremental progress is encouraging, but additional phases of agreement or a larger deal that includes key issues like intellectual property, technology transfers and enforcement will likely take more time.”
“Thus, trade issues will remain a source of volatility. More broadly, we expect stocks to continue to rise but at a slower pace than they have over the past few years, supported by ongoing economic growth, earnings growth and lower interest rates.”