The 2 Dow Stocks You Must Watch This Week

With eight Dow components reporting earnings, these are the two must-see stocks.

Apr 20, 2014 at 7:03PM
Longview

Earnings season will continue this week for the Dow Jones Industrials (DJINDICES:^DJI), with eight of its components reporting earnings between Tuesday and Thursday. But if you don't have the time to look at all of those earnings reports, the two stocks you shouldn't miss are Caterpillar (NYSE:CAT) and AT&T (NYSE:T), whose results will be especially important in setting the direction of the Dow and the stock market in general.

Cat

Source: Caterpillar.

Caterpillar has been one of the most valuable companies in the Dow Jones Industrials for getting a read on the health of the global economy, because the heavy-equipment manufacturer relies not just on U.S. sales but also an extensive overseas network of distribution for its overall growth. For years, Caterpillar has watched as growth in China has inexorably slowed, and the big drop in mined-commodities prices last year threw a wrench into its long-term strategy to get more heavily into the mining business through its acquisition of Bucyrus in 2011. In response, Caterpillar has gone through extensive restructuring efforts to make itself more efficient and rein in costs. Yet the true test for Caterpillar will be whether it can take advantage of better conditions in the U.S. construction industry to get its earnings moving back in the right direction. Look for clues about Caterpillar's worldwide progress in getting its ship in order when it reports on Thursday.

T

Meanwhile, AT&T faces a much different situation, as its industry is fundamentally strong. Yet lately, AT&T has been under attack from other players in the U.S. wireless space, as smaller competitors aim to supplant AT&T's No. 2 position by implementing new wireless plans that try to undercut AT&T on cost. AT&T has responded not just by reasserting its higher quality but also with plan changes of its own, and that suggests that the company is concerned about the potential to have subscribers leave its ranks in favor of much-hyped competing plans. When AT&T reports its quarterly results on Tuesday, you should get a much clearer sense not only of whether the telecom giant's rivals have been successful in taking a bite out of its market share but also how AT&T proposes to answer the challenge in the long run.

All of the earnings reports that Dow-component stocks issue this week will be interesting and give useful information to Dow investors. But Caterpillar and AT&T have the best chance of either sending the Dow Jones Industrials to new highs or holding the average back.

Your cable company is scared, but you can get rich
You know cable's going away. But do you know how to profit? There's $2.2 trillion out there to be had. Currently, cable grabs a big piece of it. That won't last. And when cable falters, three companies are poised to benefit. Click here for their names.

 

Dan Caplinger and The Motley Fool have no position in any of the stocks mentioned. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days. We Fools don't all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy.

1 Key Step to Get Rich

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better. Whether that’s helping people overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we can help.

Feb 1, 2016 at 4:54PM

To be perfectly clear, this is not a get-rich action that my Foolish colleagues and I came up with. But we wouldn't argue with the approach.

A 2015 Business Insider article titled, "11 websites to bookmark if you want to get rich" rated The Motley Fool as the #1 place online to get smarter about investing.

"The Motley Fool aims to build a strong investment community, which it does by providing a variety of resources: the website, books, a newspaper column, a radio [show], and [newsletters]," wrote (the clearly insightful and talented) money reporter Kathleen Elkins. "This site has something for every type of investor, from basic lessons for beginners to investing commentary on mutual funds, stock sectors, and value for the more advanced."

Our mission at The Motley Fool is to help the world invest better, so it's nice to receive that kind of recognition. It lets us know we're doing our job.

Whether that's helping the entirely uninitiated overcome their fear of stocks all the way to offering clear and successful guidance on complicated-sounding options trades, we want to provide our readers with a boost to the next step on their journey to financial independence.

Articles and beyond

As Business Insider wrote, there are a number of resources available from the Fool for investors of all levels and styles.

In addition to the dozens of free articles we publish every day on our website, I want to highlight two must-see spots in your tour of fool.com.

For the beginning investor

Investing can seem like a Big Deal to those who have yet to buy their first stock. Many investment professionals try to infuse the conversation with jargon in order to deter individual investors from tackling it on their own (and to justify their often sky-high fees).

But the individual investor can beat the market. The real secret to investing is that it doesn't take tons of money, endless hours, or super-secret formulas that only experts possess.

That's why we created a best-selling guide that walks investors-to-be through everything they need to know to get started. And because we're so dedicated to our mission, we've made that available for free.

If you're just starting out (or want to help out someone who is), go to www.fool.com/beginners, drop in your email address, and you'll be able to instantly access the quick-read guide ... for free.

For the listener

Whether it's on the stationary exercise bike or during my daily commute, I spend a lot of time going nowhere. But I've found a way to make that time benefit me.

The Motley Fool offers five podcasts that I refer to as "binge-worthy financial information."

Motley Fool Money features a team of our analysts discussing the week's top business and investing stories, interviews, and an inside look at the stocks on our radar. It's also featured on several dozen radio stations across the country.

The hosts of Motley Fool Answers challenge the conventional wisdom on life's biggest financial issues to reveal what you really need to know to make smart money moves.

David Gardner, co-founder of The Motley Fool, is among the most respected and trusted sources on investing. And he's the host of Rule Breaker Investing, in which he shares his insights into today's most innovative and disruptive companies ... and how to profit from them.

Market Foolery is our daily look at stocks in the news, as well as the top business and investing stories.

And Industry Focus offers a deeper dive into a specific industry and the stories making headlines. Healthcare, technology, energy, consumer goods, and other industries take turns in the spotlight.

They're all informative, entertaining, and eminently listenable ... and I don't say that simply because the hosts all sit within a Nerf-gun shot of my desk. Rule Breaker Investing and Answers contain timeless advice, so you might want to go back to the beginning with those. The other three take their cues from the market, so you'll want to listen to the most recent first. All are available at www.fool.com/podcasts.

But wait, there's more

The book and the podcasts – both free ... both awesome – also come with an ongoing benefit. If you download the book, or if you enter your email address in the magical box at the podcasts page, you'll get ongoing market coverage sent straight to your inbox.

Investor Insights is valuable and enjoyable coverage of everything from macroeconomic events to investing strategies to our analyst's travels around the world to find the next big thing. Also free.

Get the book. Listen to a podcast. Sign up for Investor Insights. I'm not saying that any of those things will make you rich ... but Business Insider seems to think so.


Compare Brokers