What to Watch on Wall Street This Week: Home Construction, Nike's Swoosh and Darden's Doldrums

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A Red Lobster seafood casual dining chain restaurant.
Alamy
You can never know in advance all the news that will move the market in a given week, but some things you can see coming. From a direct marketer of wellness supplements stepping up with healthy financials (we hope) to Olive Garden's parent checking in with a report on the dreary state of casual dining, here are some of the things that will help shape the week that lies ahead on Wall Street.

Monday -- Human Nature

Nature's Sunshine Products (NATR) distributes natural wellness products through its growing direct sales force of more than 340,000 reps worldwide, and it also happens to be kicking off the new trading week with its latest financials.

Analysts expect to see healthy bottom-line growth in Monday morning's quarterly report. They predict a profit of $0.35 a share, well ahead of the $0.28 a share it rang up a year earlier. The rub is that Nature's Sunshine has come up short against Wall Street profit targets in three of the past four quarters.

Tuesday -- Photoshop These Financials

Adobe Systems (ADBE) reports on Tuesday. The desktop publishing software giant behind Photoshop, Flash, and PDF authoring platform Acrobat has seen better days. The market's bracing for a dip in revenue and profitability in its latest quarter.

That probably isn't much of a surprise. There are now free or nearly free Web-based alternatives to many of Adobe's products. The alternatives may not have as many features, but they're more than enough for casual users. Adobe is going to need new products to get back on the growth track.

Wednesday -- New Home Sales Brewing

One of the economy's biggest turnaround stories is the residential real estate revival. Folks are buying houses again and they're willing to pay more for them, which is making developers a lot of money. After all, their component costs aren't rising at the same clip as home prices.

We'll get a great snapshot of the industry this week. KB Home (KBH) reports on Wednesday, and Lennar (LEN) follows a day later. KB Home is expected to post its third consecutive quarterly profit, and Lennar is likely to continue to build on its recent healthy growth.

Thursday -- Just Do It

Nike (NKE) has established itself as the top dog in athletic footwear, branching out into performance apparel and other branded merchandise. It reports on Thursday. Analysts are holding out for 8 percent growth in revenue, but they expect to see profitability taking a small step back.

Friday -- Cutting Bait on Red Lobster

Darden Restaurants (DRI) is in trouble. It apparently couldn't find a buyer for Red Lobster, so the casual dining giant is spinning it off later this year. Its other major chain -- Olive Garden -- has been struggling in recent quarters, leading Darden to postpone near-term expansion of the oft-lampooned chain of Italian eateries.

Darden reports on Friday morning. Investors will naturally get an update on its efforts to separate Red Lobster from the rest of the company. We may also get an early read on how some of the menu changes at Olive Garden that include new salad toppings pasta offerings are holding up. Wall Street pros see a sharp drop in profitability at Darden, and the bad news is that the chain has come up short in each of its three previous quarters. In short, don't be surprised if indigestion is on the menu.

Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Adobe Systems and Nike. The Motley Fool owns shares of Nike. Try any of our newsletter services free for 30 days.‚Äč

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k4jlp

Gee that's funny, the piece did not mention the REAL REASON some companies in America are not doing well. That reason is most Americans don't have any extra income to buy a new house, new clothes, vacations or a new car. We have given it all the the energy and healthcare folks as the transfer of wealth continues. The stagnant wages we receive are eaten up just to live. One day when the elite admit these facts, they will know they have screwed themselves, their Country and the futures of many many people.

March 17 2014 at 7:47 AM Report abuse +2 rate up rate down Reply