The abridged holiday trading week kicks off with Red Hat
All three stocks run with different crowds, but their financial showings and outlooks matter. Red Hat is a great gauge of the commercialization of the open source Linux operating system that is powering many netbooks these days. Office furniture giant Steelcase is the perfect proxy for corporate office spending. Walgreen is a drugstore bellwether.
Sadly, the one thing that all three companies have in common is that analysts don't see earnings growth out of any of them for the quarter. Walgreen is the relative speedster on the bottom line, and its $0.46-a-share profit target is flat with last year's showing.
The good news is that you won't find many companies posting lower quarterly results on Wednesday. The bad news is that, given that most companies will be hightailing it home for the holidays, you don't have any significant stateside stocks coughing up their financials on Wednesday.
The market is closed on Christmas, but the multiplex is certainly open. Several major flicks open on Thursday including The Spirit, Marley & Me, Bedtime Stories, and The Curious Case of Benjamin Button.
The films are being put out mostly by studios that are part of larger media conglomerates like Paramount or Disney
The market opens on Friday, but don't count on more domestic earnings to pour in. Companies know you're somewhere else, like at the mall returning gifts like that electric tea kettle you never wanted.
Until next week, I remain,