In the last five trading days, all the major U.S. stock market indices have declined 10.5%-12.5%. Indeed, the only other times the S&P 500 lost 10% in a week were in October 1987, April 2000, September 2001 and October 2008.
Not exactly fun times.
Every day last week, there was a new round of corporate warnings. And some companies admitted they cannot assess the damage being done to their businesses. Compounding the problem is the growing list of cancelled conferences and companies curbing business travel.
As the shock of the expanding coronavirus wreaked havoc on the markets last week, our position has been investors would be reassessing the impact to global growth and corporate earnings.
We are starting to see some firms share their updated views on the earnings damage and it ain't pretty. And this is likely just the beginning of the forecast updates. Given the continued spread of the virus we are likely to see more downward revisions in the days ahead.
What's next for the market? Key economic numbers and earnings reports will certainly provide some answers this week.
Key Economic Reports This Week
Normally, we would begin talking about what's on tap for Monday. However, late Friday, China published its NBS (National Bureau of Statistics) Manufacturing PMI for February. The manufacturing purchasing managers index dropped to a record low 35.7, vs. the 50.0 reading recorded for January, showing the effects of the coronavirus on factory activity in China.
Odds are this data, along with February PMI data to be published early Monday morning for China, Japan and the eurozone from IHS Markit, will set the tone for how the markets start the week.
Here's a look at the economic data scheduled for this week:
Monday, March 2: Jibun Bank February Japan Manufacturing PMI; Caixin China General Manufacturing PMI for February; IHS Markit Eurozone Manufacturing February PMI; January Construction Spending; February Auto & Truck Sales; IHS Markit U.S. Manufacturing PMI (February); February reading for the Chicago Fed PMI.
Tuesday, March 3: February ISM Manufacturing Index.
Wednesday, March 4: February ADP Employment Change report; Weekly EIA Crude Oil Inventory report; Fed Beige Book.
Thursday, March 5: Weekly Jobless Claims; Natural Gas Inventories data; 4Q 2019 Productivity and Unit Labor Costs; January Factory Orders; February ISM Non-Manufacturing Index.
Friday, March 6: February Employment Report; January Consumer Credit report.
Retail Earnings Take Center Stage
There will be a considerable downtick in the volume of quarterly earnings reports this week as well as a pronounced shift toward retail. We'll be looking for comments as to how supply chains may be impacted by the coronavirus.
After Tuesday's market close, shares of Big Lots (BIG) dropped more than 20% in aftermarket trading as the retailer missed profit expectations for the December quarter and said it expects a "challenging" first quarter of 2020 partly on supply-chain disruptions due to the "novel coronavirus health emergency." Odds are this won't be the only retail company to be affected.
Here's a look at the corporate earnings reports we'll be most focused on next week:
Wednesday, March 4: Abercrombie & Fitch (ANF) , Brown-Forman (BF.B) , Campbell Soup (CPB) , Dollar Tree (DLTR) , Navistar (NAV) , The Children's Place (PLCE) , American Eagle Outfitters (AEO) , Marvel Technology (MRVL) , Ping Identity (PING) , Splunk (SPLK) , Zoom Video (ZM) .
Upcoming Dates to Note
-- March 3: 2020 Presidential Election Super Tuesday Primary
-- March 5-6: OPEC meeting
-- March 12: European Central Bank rate decision
-- March 17-18: Federal Reserve FOMC meeting
-- April 28-29: Federal Reserve FOMC meeting
-- April 30: European Central Bank rate decision
-- May 12-14: Google I/O Developer Conference
This commentary is an excerpt from the Trifecta Stocks Roundup a weekly feature sent to subscribers of Trifecta Stocks. Click here to learn more about this portfolio, trading ideas and market commentary product.
-- Bob Lang and Chris Versace are co-portfolio managers of Trifecta Stocks.