Start the clock. You now have eight trading days to position yourself on either side of Sirius XM Radio
The morning release and analyst call promise to be enlightening, especially since the company abandoned its practice of providing quarterly and annual subscriber targets earlier this year.
This leaves a few important questions that shareholders and industry watchers will likely have answered come May 7.
- Did Sirius XM gain or lose net subscribers during the quarter?
- How much higher will the interest expense be now that Liberty Media
(NASDAQ:LCAPA)has completed its costly lifeline?
- Is the long-awaited Web-streaming program for Apple's
(NASDAQ:AAPL)App Store still on track for its release during the current quarter?
The first question isn't trivial. Sirius XM closed out the fourth quarter with 82,945 more subscribers than it started with, and that was during the seasonally spiked holiday period. Many of its distribution partners have faltered in 2009. Ford
Liberty Media beat out EchoStar
As for the App Store program, some will argue that it's immaterial. There are plenty of free Web radio apps for the device, so how likely are iPhone owners to pay up for Sirius XM? Well, it may be a juicier number than you think, given the vetted market of iPhone users. Customers are already paying heavy monthly usage fees -- including $30 for the Web-access data plan alone -- to the point where paying an extra $13 for Sirius or XM programming may seem feasible.
Next Thursday has the potential to deliver heaping portions of both good and bad news. Since the stock has run so high since bottoming out in February -- though clearly trading well below where it was a year ago -- the company's quarterly report should move the stock one way or the other.
Yes, start the clock.
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Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz is such a fan of satellite radio that he subscribes to both Sirius and XM. He does not own shares in any of the stocks in this story. He is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early. The Fool has a disclosure policy.