Market Preview: Here Come the Banks!
"The core story here, we think, is that rising stock prices -- until very recently -- and higher gasoline prices have pulled sentiment in opposite directions, with the net result that expectations are stalling," he wrote. "People's views of the current economy are more driven by the state of the labor market -- specifically in the case of the Michigan survey, by the pace of layoffs -- but we are nervous about the near-term gas hit, so overall we expect the headline sentiment index to be little changed from the 76.2 final March reading."
Coinstar, the operator of coin-counting machines and the Redbox DVD rental kiosks, gave a dramatic boost to its financial guidance, detailing above-consensus earnings and revenue expectations for both the first quarter and full year. The stock was last quoted at $69.60, up 13.5%, on volume of nearly 850,000, according to Nasdaq.com.
It was a bit more difficult to parse how the market feels about Google. The company beat Wall Street's expectation for its bottom line by 4%, a marked improvement from its surprising miss last quarter, and announced a convoluted stock dividend plan that it said essentially amounts to a two-for-one share split.
But the internals of the report showed some holes -- average cost-per-click was down 6% on a sequential basis and 12% year-over-year -- and the stock couldn't muster much of a gain in late trades, rising just 0.4% to $653.57; although it did enjoy a 2.4% rise in the regular session.
Adobe Systems(ADBE) should also be a focus stock on Friday after the company, whose shares are up nearly 17% so far in 2012, announced plans to buy back up to $2 billion worth of its stock by the end of fiscal 2015.
--Written by Michael Baron in New York.
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