The shortest month of the year is here, but investors had better not snooze through the next four weeks. Earnings season is kicking into high gear, and a lot of stocks are going to be making some noise in February.
The market never takes a month off. Several companies will be making headlines in the coming weeks, and the news won't all be flattering. Let's go over some of the days investors will want to circle in February.
Disney (NYSE:DIS) loves raising Disney World prices this time of year. The media giant has boosted its single-day admissions for its Florida theme parks every single year since 1988, and the past four years, the increase has taken place on a Sunday in February.
Attendance has been sluggish for Disney's domestic attractions, but that's not going to stop the company from stretching its streak of annual increases to 30. It may or may not happen this weekend, but the only real surprise will be if the House of Mouse doesn't announce an increase in one-day ticket prices any of the next four weekends.
Later this week, Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) will launch The Joel McHale Show With Joel McHale, a weekly half-hour show that skewers pop culture and news. McHale rose to fame on E!'s The Soup, and this will hopefully channel some of that weekly half-hour show's charm through celebrity clips and comedy bits.
This isn't the first time Netflix has tapped an E! talk show for talent; it recruited Chelsea Lately host Chelsea Handler for its first talk show two years ago. Handler's show has established a cult audience, but it hasn't generated the viral buzz that gets other nighttime shows noticed. We'll see if McHale is able to score at Netflix.
One of the last companies to report earnings this month is Discovery Communications (NASDAQ:DISC.A) (NASDAQ:DISCK). The cable network operator behind Animal Planet, TLC, Eurosport, and a few namesake channels has languished alongside many of its peers. Folks are kissing their fat cable and satellite television bills goodbye, and that's bad news for the content providers that get paid per subscriber.
This report is particularly interesting, given the heavy consolidation activity taking place. Discovery could always be a buyer or a seller in the future, and its financial performance on the morning of Feb. 27 will go a long way toward dictating which way it goes. Discovery stock moved lower last year, and the shares have shed nearly half of their value since the start of 2014.