Morning Market Briefing

Morning Market Briefing
Wednesday, February 23, 2011, 09:17


Commentary

Stocks are poised to open Wednesday's session modestly higher, with traders looking to do some bargain hunting after yesterday's massive sell off. Nonetheless, ongoing chaos in the Middle East remains a key headwind to any substantial upside. The major index futures are all in positive territory, with the Dow futures up by 28 points. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Economic News

Reserve Bank of Australia Governor Glenn Stevens on Wednesday urged Australian residents to save rather than spend as a means of dealing with the country's mining boom. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Japan saw a merchandise trade deficit of 471.4 billion yen in January, the Ministry of Finance said on Wednesday, falling into the red for the first time in 22 months. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Hong Kong will take adequate measures to alleviate the risk of a property bubble, Financial Secretary John Tsang said in his budget speech on Wednesday. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Singapore's annual inflation accelerated unexpectedly in January, to the highest level since December 2008, on higher transportation and housing cost, official data showed Wednesday. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

More British policy makers turned hawkish in February amid rising inflationary pressure, the Bank of England showed Wednesday. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Eurozone industrial new orders unexpectedly rose in December as France and Italy outperformed, offsetting a decline in Germany. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Earnings News

Off-price apparel retailer The TJX Companies Inc. (TJX) Wednesday reported a drop in fourth-quarter profit largely due to store-closing charges. Net sales, however, rose 7%, with comparable store sales rising 2%. Adjusted earnings topped estimates, but revenues fell short of expectations. The company also issued first-quarter and the corresponding fiscal year comparable sales and earnings outlook. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Luxury home builder Toll Brothers Inc. (TOL) Wednesday reported a first-quarter profit, reversing from the loss in the previous year, thanks to a higher tax benefit and lower write-downs. Revenues inched up 2% on a 7% rise in average delivery prices. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Home improvement retailer Lowe's Companies Inc. (LOW) said Wednesday its fourth-quarter profit increased 39% from the prior year as a result of a higher revenues and gross margin. Revenues rose 3.1%, with comparable store-sales going up 1.1%. The quarterly results exceeded expectations. The company also issued first-quarter and fiscal 2011 outlook. Expected earnings for the first quarter could miss or match analysts' estimates. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Pay television service provider DirecTV (DTV) Wednesday reported a profit for the fourth quarter compared to a loss last year. Revenues increased 11% on growth in new subscribers and also higher average monthly revenue in the US market. Both adjusted earnings and revenues beat the market view. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Restaurant chain operator Tim Hortons Inc. (THI) Wednesday said fourth-quarter profit increased sharply on a one-time gain from sale of assets. Revenues declined 3.5% primarily due to a sale-related charge being recorded therein. The company also issued 2011 earnings guidance and said its Board has hiked the quarterly dividend by 31%. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Natural gas provider Chesapeake Energy Corp. (CHK) Tuesday reported a profit for the fourth-quarter, swinging back from a loss it made last year, thanks to one-time gains. Revenues, however, declined as a result of lower realized prices. While adjusted earnings topped estimates, revenues missed. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Hewlett-Packard Company (HPQ) said Tuesday fourth-quarter profit rose from the prior year, thanks to higher demand, especially in the BRIC countries. Adjusted earnings exceeded expectations, but revenues disappointed. It issued a second-quarter financial guidance, and the expected earnings and revenues are both below consensus. HP also raised its fiscal 2011 earnings per share outlook, but lowered the revenues expectation. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Car rental firm Hertz Global Holdings Company (HTZ) announced Tuesday that fourth-quarter loss narrowed marginally on lower one-time losses. Revenues increased 5.5% thanks to car rentals increasing 5.8%. Adjusted earnings beat analysts' estimates, while revenues were in line with the Street view. The company also issued full year 2011 financial guidance. (Feb 23, 2011) Full Article

Todays WS Events

American Tower Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 8:30 AM ET
American Tower Corp. (AMT) will host a conference call at 8:30 AM ET, February 23, 2011, to discuss its Q4 10 earnings result. To access the webcast, log on to www.americantower.com/atcweb/irpages/irhome.asp To participate in the call, dial (866) 740-9153 (US) or (706) 645-9644 (International), access code 39411530. A replay of the call can be heard by dialing (800) 642-1687 (US) or (706) 645-9291 (International), access code 39411530. (Feb 23, 2011)

Lowe's Q4 10 Earnings Conference Call At 9:00 AM ET
Lowe's Companies, Inc. (LOW) will host a conference call at 9:00 AM ET, February 23, 2011, to discuss its Q4 10 earnings results. To access the live webcast, log on at www.Lowes.com/investor A replay of the call can be heard by dialing 800-642-1687 (US) or 706-645-9291 (International) with ID 41539324. (Feb 23, 2011) 

Kellogg To Present At CAGNY Conference; Webcast At 7:45 AM ET
Kellogg Company (K) will present at the 2011 Consumer Analyst Group of New York. The event is scheduled to begin at 7:45 AM ET on February 23, 2011. To access the webcast, log on at http://investor.kelloggs.com (Feb 23, 2011)

International Paper To Present At Credit SuisseConference; Webcast At 10:30 AM
International Paper (IP) will speak at the Credit Suisse Global Paper & Packaging Conference in New York City. The event is scheduled to begin at 10:30 AM ET on February 23, 2011. To access the live webcast, log on at www.internationalpaper.com (Feb 23, 2011)

The Coca-Cola To Present At CAGNY Conference; Webcast At 12:30 PM ET
The Coca-Cola Company (KO) CEO Muhtar Kent will present at the Consumer Analyst Group of New York (CAGNY) Conference in Boca Raton, Florida. The event is scheduled to begin at 12:30 PM ET on February 23, 2011. To access the webcast, log on to www.thecoca-colacompany.com/investors/index.html (Feb 23, 2011)

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