Second-quarter earnings season kicks off with the first cluster of major reports Tuesday including JPMorgan Chase and Wells Fargo. Google, Goldman Sachs, Citigroup, Intel, and General Electric also report during the week.
Banks, which typically dominate the first week of earnings, are expected to be standouts, with easy comparisons due to charges taken last year. Earnings for the S&P financials sector are expected to be up 14.9 percent, according to Thomson Reuters.
“We look at the earning season and think this is likely to be the trough for earnings in this cycle,” said Julian Emanuel, equity and derivatives strategist at UBS. “Consensus is looking at negative 4 percent (for the S&P 500). We think it comes in closer to flat. You combine that with the notion that the U.S. economy is a self-sustaining ecosystem—70 percent of S&P 500 revenue is domestically derived, and 80 percent of the Russell 2000’s revenue is domestically derived.”
While earnings season is getting good buzz, some analysts worry that a firmer dollar and the plunge in oil prices could show up in company comments, as possible negatives for the third quarter. For the second quarter, energy earnings are expected to be down 60.5 percent, according to Thomson Reuters.
“The banks have very easy comparisons,” said Boockvar. “Tech is not going to be good. There are pockets of serious weakness. When you look at the PC area, there’s trouble there. … This earnings season’s no layup.”
Just the promise of a resolution in Greece’s debt negotiations and stabilization in Chinese mainland markets rallied stocks Friday. But China will remain a focus in the week ahead, as a slew of Chinese economic reports are expected and traders continue to watch its markets. Trade is released Monday, while retail sales, industrial production and GDP are Wednesday.
The Shanghai stock market was 5 percent higher for the week, after rallies Thursday and Friday erased losses earlier in the week.
In the U.S., there’s a heavy economic calendar in the week ahead, with retail sales Tuesday and the Empire State and Philadelphia Fed surveys Wednesday and Thursday, respectively. Industrial production is Wednesday and CPI and housing starts are Friday.
But Yellen will be the key event when it comes to traders, who are fixated on divining the course of interest rates. According to RBS data, on Friday the expectations in the futures market for a first Fed rate hike moved from March 2016 to January 2016, as markets reacted to positive sentiment on Greece and Yellen’s comments.
Yellen reiterated that the Fed could raise rates this year, and that it expects the economy to improve. While she made the same statement in May, the market’s expectation for the timing of the first rate hike shifted to next year because of uncertainty surrounding Greece’s potential exit from the euro and China’s market meltdown.