Attention Turns From the Jobs Number to Earnings (KBH, PSMT, SHAW, TXI, REE, DIET)
Stocks turned in another lackluster performance but despite the drift south in today’s session equities extended their rally, finishing the week higher for the sixth time in a row. The employment numbers released by the government weren’t as good as hoped for, but at least they moved in a positive direction. Some large companies will report Q4 results next week and the crush of earnings will pick up steam in the weeks that follow, which will either fuel an extension to the rally or cause it to sputter. We’re expecting some healthy earnings reports.
The Rare Earth Stocks Index was the top performing tickerspy Index on the day, led by Rare Element Resources (REE) with a 6% gain. The Fitness and Dieting Stocks Index was the day’s worst performing tickerspy Index, with eDiets.com (DIET) down -9%.
Stocks edged lower on Friday, with Dow losing -23 points to end the week at 11,675, the S&P 500 was off by -2 points to 1,272, and the Nasdaq lost -7 points to finish at 2,703. Gold prices closed lower by $2.80 per ounce to $1,368.90. Crude oil also closed lower, losing 35 cents to end at $88.03 per barrel.
On the economic front, the Labor Department announced that the unemployment rate fell to 9.4% from 9.7% last month, reaching its lowest level in 19 months. Employers added 103,000 jobs, up from November’s revised gain of 71,000, but below the 145,000 increase anticipated by economists.
In earnings news, shares of KB Home (KBH) rose 6.4% after the homebuilder posted a Q4 profit that easily surpassed analyst estimates. For the period ended November 30th, net income was $17.4 million, or 23 cents per share, down -83% from $100.7 million, or $1.31 per share, last year, when KB reported a tax benefit of $191.7 million. Wall Street was expecting EPS of 17 cents per share. Revenue fell to $451 million from $674.6 million, but came in above the $441.3 million consensus.
Warehouse club owner and operator PriceSmart (PSMT) announced that its quarterly net income topped expectations, and shares of the stock edged up 2.4%. For Q1, the company earned $14.9 million, or 50 cents a share, which beat estimates by six cents. A year earlier net income was $10.4 million, or 35 cents a share. Sales jumped 22% to $377.3 million, while same-store sales climbed 15.6%. Five Pros held the stock in their top-15 U.S.-listed equity positions at the end of Q3, and 40 tickerspy members hold the stock in their portfolios.
Shares of Shaw Group (SHAW) dropped -5% after the engineering and construction company said it lost -$16.4 million, or -19 cents per share, during its Q1. Last year the firm lost -$20.5 million, or -25 cents per share. Adjusted EPS was a loss of -6 cents per share, compared with the consensus of 8 cents, which most likely doesn’t include any one-time charges or currency adjustments. Revenue slipped to $1.54 million from $1.85 million. Shaw reaffirmed its FY11 forecast of EPS of $1.70-$1.80, down from an earlier view of $2.15-$2.25. The company expects full-year revenue of $6.5 billion. Analysts are looking for FY11 EPS of $1.74 on revenue of $6.85 billion.
Texas Industries (TXI) saw its shares slip -3% on news the building materials supplier reported a wider loss during its second quarter in part due to higher costs. For the period ended November 30th, the company posted a loss of -$11.2 million, or -40 cents per share, compared with a loss of -$3.7 million, or -13 cents per share, a year ago. Wall Street was expecting a loss of -53 cents per share. Revenue moved up to $148.1 million from $142.9 million, while gross profit fell to $12.1 million from $16.9 million. Three Pros held the stock in their top-15 U.S.-listed equity positions at the end of Q3, and 51 tickerspy members hold the stock in their portfolios.
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