The new trading week starts with H&R Block (NYSE:HRB) on the block. Analysts see the tax prep giant posting a loss of $0.40 a share in its fiscal second quarter. Don't panic. The company typically posts a loss during its first two fiscal periods, only to more than compensate for them when tax season finally rolls around.

We haven't written about Oil-Dri (NYSE:ODC) in over a year, so let's show the kitty litter maker some love heading into Tuesday's earnings report. I've heard at least two different analysts on CNBC sing Oil-Dri's recessionary-proof praises. They argue no matter how bad the economy gets, cat owners aren't going to deal with stinky litter boxes.

I don't necessarily agree. If things get bad enough, feline owners will likely give up their cats if they can barely feed themselves. Or they could have little choice if they have to downgrade to a pet-free apartment.

It's burger time on Wednesday, with CKE Restaurants (NYSE:CKR) reporting. The company behind the Hardee's and Carl's Jr. fast-food chains has posted better-than-expected results in each of the first two quarters of this fiscal year. Let's see if it can keep the streak going.

Several consumer-facing companies hit the earnings stage on Thursday, including warehouse club Costco (NASDAQ:COST), trendy yoga apparel retailer lululemon athletica (NASDAQ:LULU), and doughnut master Krispy Kreme (NYSE:KKD). Wall Street sees all three companies posting improved profitability during the quarter, which may be a pretty surprising feat in these guarded times.

It's quiet on the earnings front on Friday, so head out to the mall for some holiday shopping if you can stomach the crowds (or lack thereof if the malls are really empty). If you're not into shopping, head out to the multiplex, where several flicks like The Day the Earth Stood Still and Nothing Like the Holidays make their big screen debuts.

Until next week, I remain,
Rick Munarriz

This article represents the opinion of the writer, who may disagree with the “official” recommendation position of a Motley Fool premium advisory service. We’re motley! Questioning an investing thesis -- even one of our own -- helps us all think critically about investing and make decisions that help us become smarter, happier, and richer.