Monday is upon us, and thoughts on Wall Street turn away from turkey and football to key companies issuing quarterly earnigns statements this week.
It's a particularly crucial period for computer makers, video game companies, digital camera companies - in short - - any company with a potential gift to be stashed away under the Christmas tree this year.
Yesterday I gave you some fresh numbers on Black Friday and the holiday shopping season. Today I have some more tid bits -- followed by a rosier-than-expected earnings scenario from one of the world's top computer makers.
Again, the numbers point to a more bullish holiday shopping season. According to ShopperTrak.com, Black Friday accounted for $8.96 billion in sales last year, while the entire Thanksgiving weekend accounted for $18.1 billion. The International Council of Shopping Centers estimates that Thanksgiving weekend usually accounts for 10% of holiday sales. Zacks.com senior retail analyst, Robert Plaza, predicts Black Friday sales this year should be in a range of $9.23 to $9.27 billion and total Thanksgiving weekend sales should total between $18.6 and $18.73 billion.
One company that could really benefit from increased holiday consumer spending is Dell Computers. According to Charles Rotblut, senior market analyst for Zacks.com., Dell should come up big this week when it reports earnings.
"Internal changes at Dell have allowed the company to top expectations for four consecutive quarters," says Rotblut. "One of the 22 covering brokerage analysts believe the computer maker can extend the streak to five and raised his forecast to 37 cents per share, three cents above the consensus forecast."
Dell is scheduled to report on Thursday, Nov 29, after the close of trading.
Other key technology companies like Analog Devices and high-end computer, printer, and tech products supplier Staples Inc. are reporting this week, as well.
It should be an interesting week for the technology market, one that could provide a revealing glimpse into 2008.