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Two Ways To Play: Earnings Report Card


Strengthen your portfolio in good times and bad.

Earnings Report Card

According to The Wall Street Journal, earnings season is roughly 75% of the way through, and investors have been happy so far with the results. Aside from the financial sector, corporate profits have remained strong and executives have done little to lower Wall Street expectations for the remainder of the year. 1Q earnings are on track to decline 15% year-over-year but analysts still believe it may be up 10% for 2008. Yet some are skeptical as this forecast translates into a 4Q that would be the most profitable in history. See Minyan Peter's economic perspective in Consumption Crisis Spreading.

From the Bull Pen: Bulls can play Kraft (KFT), a company with pricing power in the consumer staples sector. Sell-stops can be set below the 50-DMA ($31.00).

From the Bear Cave: Bears can play the downside in the Retail ETF (RTH); buy-stops above $100.

Buffet Lays Blame

According to Bloomberg, Billionaire Warren Buffett laid much of the blame on Wall Street for letting the financial system spin out of control. Buffett, at Berkshire Hathaway's (BRK.A) annual meeting this weekend predicted more pain and criticized banks, lenders, insurers in addition to ratings agencies and regulators for failing to maintain the financial system. At the conference, Buffett also dropped hints of his future investments saying Asian currencies will rise against the weak dollar in part to the weakness of the U.S. economy. See Minyan Peter's Is Dilution Done?

From the Bull Pen: Bulls can choose the Japanese Yen ETF (FXY); sell-stops can be set below the 200- DMA ($90.70).

From the Bear Cave: Bears might see a downside play in the KBW Insurance ETF (KIE). Buy-stops can be set above the 200 DMA ($52).

For more ideas, check out Minyanville's Spotlight Stocks.

Quick Check Around the World

It's Cinco de Mayo everywhere but the Street doesn't seem to be celebrating as foreign markets are skewed to the downside.

Asian trading closed with the Hang Seng -0.22%, Sensex -0.62%, Taiwan -1.41% and Shanghai +1.84%.

A quick look towards Europe finds the CAC -0.33%, DAX -0.07%

As of 8:40 AM EST S&P futures are down by -7 points to 1408, and Nasdaq Futures are lower by -8 points to 1982.

A Look At Commodities

In commodities, crude oil is up +0.54 to 116.86. Gold is higher +10 to 867.80. Silver is higher +0.294 to 16.675, and copper is up +4.45 to 390.25.

The dollar index is lower -0.134 to 73.373.

On the Radar


10:00 ISM Non-Mfg Composite: 49.5 cons.

Click here for the full trading radar.

Happy Monday, Minyans! Good luck!
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No positions in stocks mentioned.

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