Feb 08, 2021 (IAM Newswire via COMTEX) -- Last week, the earnings season kicked into high gear and the world made another step toward ending the COVID-19 pandemic. Both the Dow Jones Industrial Average and the S&P 500 gained over 3% to bounce back into positive territory for 2021. U.S. markets wrap up fourth quarter earnings season in style this week, with three trading favorites posting results and guidance. Twitter Inc. /zigman2/quotes/203180645/composite TWTR -2.22% kicks things off after Tuesday's closing bell, followed by General Motors Co. /zigman2/quotes/205226835/composite GM +0.17% on Wednesday, and Walt Disney Co. /zigman2/quotes/203410047/composite DIS +0.72% on Thursday. Coca Cola /zigman2/quotes/209159848/composite KO +0.66% and PepsiCo /zigman2/quotes/208744353/composite PEP +1.30% will also be on the repertoire along with Uber Technologies /zigman2/quotes/211348248/composite UBER -0.64% and Lyft /zigman2/quotes/208999293/composite LYFT -1.61% .
On Thursday, Disney’s report kicks off a new fiscal year for the entertainment giant, whose top and bottom lines plunged due to the global pandemic as the booming growth of its streaming service was not enough to offset plunging demand at theme parks, film studios, and cruise lines. Disney’s profits were severely affected, with operating income falling 45% last year to $8.1 billion. The possibility of COVID-19 threat coming to an end is brining hopes that Disney will achieve a robust recovery soon and return even stronger. Meanwhile, Disney+ gives the company a viable tool it can use to market its own intellectual property, while benefiting its margins with risingsubscription fees. Netflix /zigman2/quotes/202353025/composite NFLX -0.49% already showed how that approach can create massive cash flow but it is also not showing any signs of stopping with many new entrants making streaming to be a very competitive field.Disney executives will discuss their 2021 outlook while probably still being cautious about the eventual recovery of other parts of its empire.
PepsiCo’s business was dramatically reshaped by the pandemic, but the beverage and snack food giant is on pace to grow organic sales by approximately 5% in 2020 after all, matching the strong rate it achieved in 2019. That success explains why investors are more optimistic about Pepsi than about Coca-Cola /zigman2/quotes/209159848/composite KO +0.66% who is also scheduled to report earnings this week. Besides a stronger beverage volume, Coke also couldn’t match Pepsi's food segment.Pepsi is well positioned to boldly step into 2021 but investors will want to see the prospect of rising cash returns, with a dividend that was recently boosted by 7 %.
Like many social media businesses, Twitter has enjoyed strong growth through the pandemic as it become more relevant than ever. User and engagement metrics each spiked over the first nine months of 2020, followed by advertising dollars as Twitter’s third-quarter sales were up 14%. But the fourth quarter was challenging due to majordisinformation issues related to the presidential election. If Facebook /zigman2/quotes/205064656/composite FB -0.53% managed to crush estimates with its political controversy, Twitter should be able to maintain its positive momentum, which is CEO Jack Dorseyalready predicted back in October. The upcoming report will reveal if politics boosted engagement levels, further and whether Twitter managed to grow sales by at least 18% as Wall Street is predicting.
Last week, Ford Motor /zigman2/quotes/208911460/composite F -0.08% managed to beat earnings per share expectations but missed on revenue, while revealing it plans to invest $29 billion in electric and self-driving vehicles through 2025, more than doubling its initial investment plans. It also announced it would cut production of its popular F-150 pickup truck on account of a global semiconductor shortage, a day after GM cut production at four of its plants for the same reason. On Wednesday, General Motors Company is expected to report net income of $2.4 billion or $1.67 a share, on sales of $36.1 billion before the market opens, based on a FactSet survey of 16 analysts. In the same period a year ago, the company reported a net income of $2.4 billion on sales of $30.8 billion. The stock has risen 37.4% since the company last reported earnings on November 5th and Honda /zigman2/quotes/207173990/composite HMC +0.26% and Nissan /zigman2/quotes/207656007/composite NSANY -0.75% are also scheduled to report earnings, providing us with news on both the traditional and electric vehicle front.
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