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3 Predictions for Next Week

By Rick Munarriz - Apr 7, 2013 at 3:00PM

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This Fool sees a limb to go out on.

I went out on a limb last week, and now it's time to see how that decision played out.

  • I predicted that BlackBerry (BB 8.24%) would close lower on the week. The hype that's been building for months surrounding the domestic launch of the Z10 hasn't matched the reality now that the country's two largest carriers have the new BlackBerry device available. Still, the stock rallied earlier in the week, holding on to enough of those gains to close out the week 1.7% higher. I was wrong.
  • I predicted that the tech-heavy Nasdaq would outperform the Dow Jones Industrial Average. (^DJI 1.76%). This has been a tricky call lately, so how did it play out this time? Well, it didn't. The Nasdaq got blasted for a 1.9% hit, and the Dow managed to close barely unchanged, with only a marginal downtick. I was wrong.
  • My final call was for Conn's (CONN -1.53%) to beat Wall Street's quarterly profit target. The consumer-electronics retailer has been able to sidestep the stagnancy taking place at larger chains because Conn's offers larger items, including mattresses and lawn-maintenance equipment, that can't be easily replaced online. The company also has been beating Wall Street estimates consistently over the past year. Analysts were looking for a profit of $0.55 a share during the quarter, and it came through with net income of $0.54. I was wrong.

I missed on all three. That doesn't happen often, and I know I can do better. So let me once again whip out my trusty, dusty, and occasionally accurate crystal ball to make three calls that may play out over the next few trading days.

1. Apple will close higher on the week
Shares of Apple (AAPL 4.08%) continue to be out of favor, and on Friday the stock nearly hit its recent low of $419. My call that Apple bottomed out four weeks ago is in jeopardy, but I'm banking on a bounce in the week ahead. Older-generation iPads don't get cheaper unless new ones are about to be announced, and if Apple doesn't have something innovative to hit the market soon, surely it would reward patient investors with a dividend increase.

Right?

After leading the Nasdaq lower last week, my call here is for Apple to move higher on the week.

2.The Nasdaq Composite will beat the Dow this week
Tech has been a big winner in recent years, so betting on tech over stodgy blue chips has been a good bet for me more often than not. I'm going to stick with this pick. Most of the names in the composite are just too cheap at this point. The market is ripe for the tech-stacked secondary stocks to continue to outpace the 30 megacaps that make up the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

3. Apogee Enterprises will beat Wall Street's earnings estimates
Some stocks are just flat-out better than others.

Apogee Enterprises (APOG 2.10%) has carved out a cozy living making value-added glass products for the architectural and picture-framing industries. Another thing it does is make analysts look like perpetual underachievers. If analysts say the company posted a profit of $0.17 a share in its latest quarter, I'll whip out a "greater than" sign. History's on my side!

One of my best tricks to beating the market is finding stocks that perpetually land ahead of the prognosticators. Let's go over the past year of earnings reports.

Quarter

EPS Estimate

EPS

Surprise

Q4 2011

$0.06

$0.11

83%

Q1 2012

$0.03

$0.06

100%

Q2 2012

$0.09

$0.17

89%

Q3 2012

$0.23

$0.28

22%

Source: Thomson Reuters.

Things can change, of course. The construction boom could come to a halt. Picture frames also may seem like buggy whips in an age where digital photography is the new normal. However, given the way Apogee has obliterated analysts' estimates with ease over the past year -- it hasn't even been close, really -- it's hard to be against this trend.

Everything seems to be falling into place for another market-thumping quarter on the bottom line.

Three for the road
Well, there are three predictions right there. Let's see how I fare this week.

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Stocks Mentioned

Dow Jones Industrial Average (Price Return) Stock Quote
Dow Jones Industrial Average (Price Return)
^DJI
$33,212.96 (1.76%) $575.77
Apple Inc. Stock Quote
Apple Inc.
AAPL
$149.64 (4.08%) $5.86
Apogee Enterprises, Inc. Stock Quote
Apogee Enterprises, Inc.
APOG
$42.71 (2.10%) $0.88
BlackBerry Stock Quote
BlackBerry
BB
$6.57 (8.24%) $0.50
Conn's, Inc. Stock Quote
Conn's, Inc.
CONN
$13.53 (-1.53%) $0.21

*Average returns of all recommendations since inception. Cost basis and return based on previous market day close.

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