Although we don't believe in timing the market or panicking over daily movements, we do like to keep an eye on market changes -- just in case they're material to our investing thesis.
Now that things have calmed down in Washington and on Wall Street, investors are getting into the good stuff: earnings reports. With only one of the Dow Jones Industrial Average's (DJINDICES: ^DJI ) stocks reporting results today, as of 12:45 p.m. EDT the index itself is flat as of 1 p.m. EDT. Earnings can move markets, but today they aren't having a big effect on any of the major indexes: The S&P 500 has moved less than a point, and the Nasdaq is up a modest 0.29%.
The only Dow component reporting earnings today was McDonald's (NYSE: MCD ) , which released quarterly results prior to the opening bell. The company reported revenue of $7.32 billion and earnings per share of $1.52; analysts were looking for $7.34 billion in revenue and EPS of $1.51. For the quarter, same-store sales were up only 0.9% -- an indication that growth may no longer be a part of the McDonald's story. Furthermore, the company said fourth-quarter same-store sales growth will be in line with the third quarter's 0.9%. Shares are down 0.8% this afternoon. If you're an investor in McDonald's, sticking it out a few more quarters to see if things turn around would likely be the best option, especially when you consider the company's strong and reliable dividend.
Outside the Dow, Hasbro (NASDAQ: HAS ) also reported this morning. The company reported a net income increase of 17% and earnings of $1.46 per share. After one-time tax adjustments it still managed to beat EPS estimates of $1.30 with $1.31. This came on revenue of $1.37 billion, higher than the $1.35 billion analysts were seeking. The company saw higher sales come from girls' toys domestically and internationally. Hasbro now looks to the fourth quarter -- the holiday season, which is historically the best sales period of the year. Shares of the toymaker are up 5.8% as investors rush to buy in before the holiday shopping hits the books.
Finally, shares of J.C. Penney (NYSE: JCP ) are down 3.6% this afternoon. The move comes after the stock received a rather bad report and the stock's price target was lowered at Imperial Capital. The research firm said J.C. Penney could seek bankruptcy protection sometime next year. The warning comes after rumors swirled last week indicating that the retailer was talking to a bankruptcy attorney and had been denied credit from a Canadian bank. The analyst believes that while these rumors are untrue, they are wearing on the company's management and its vendors. Imperial Capital cut its price target to $1 from $5 saying one of J.C. Penney's only options in the future will be to file for bankruptcy protection. Shareholders should already be hiding in the woods, so there's no need to tell them they really should not own this stock today.
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