3 things to watch in the stock market this week

Stocks jumped last week, as both the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJINDICES: ^DJI) and the S&P 500 (SNPINDEX: ^GSPC) recovered lost ground. The S&P gained over 3% and is back near all-time highs with just a few trading days left in 2021.

Several popular stocks will announce earnings over the next five days and could see big moves. Let’s take a look at a few highly anticipated reports from this list, by Winnebago (NYSE: WGO), Darden Restaurants (NYSE: DRI), and Adobe (NASDAQ: ADBE).

1. Adobe’s 2022 outlook

Adobe’s shares lost ground during the latest market slump, but shareholders are hoping a rebound will arrive with its Thursday earnings report. The software-as-a-service giant had plenty of good news for shareholders in its last announcement. Sales rose 22% in Q3, and operating income expanded even faster thanks to rising profitability.

CEO Shantanu Narayen and his team predicted back in September that sales will land at roughly $4.1 billion this quarter, equating to a 19% revenue spike. That level of growth, particularly in its cloud services subscriptions, brings benefits including surging cash flow.

Investors are most excited about Adobe’s ability to market its widening portfolio to a much larger selling base in 2022 and beyond. Look for executives to issue a bullish outlook on that score if demand trends held up through the close of the current fiscal year.

2. Winnebago’s production rate

Winnebago has one big question to answer for investors on Friday: Is its manufacturing network up to the task? The recreational-vehicle leader is benefiting from historically strong demand for outdoor lifestyle products, including its boats, towable RVs, and motorhomes. Low inventory levels at dealerships is boosting prices and profit margins at the same time.

Yet Winnebago needs to scale up production so that it can turn its rising backlog of orders into actual deliveries. We’ll learn on Friday whether the company succeeded in slowing the expansion rate of that backlog even as demand remained strong. Winnebago will also update investors on pricing trends heading into the new fiscal year.

The RV market is projected to grow again in 2022 after spiking this past year, and that boost should benefit Winnebago more than its peers. Look for management to discuss their detailed forecast for the year ahead on Friday.

3. Darden Restaurants’ traffic

Darden Restaurants’ business is already rebounding sharply following collapsing demand during earlier phases of the pandemic. But investors are demanding more from the owner of the Olive Garden and Longhorn Steakhouse franchises, which reports earnings results on Friday morning.

The big question heading into this week’s report is to what extent resurging COVID-19 case rates slowed its momentum in fiscal Q2. Sales growth slowed to a crawl in late August, the company revealed during its last report. We’ll learn this week whether the slump was widespread enough to stall revenue growth.

Darden probably handled the challenge well, though, with help from to-go orders, which last quarter accounted for more than 25% of sales. Ideally, success there will convince management to affirm, or potentially raise, their current outlook that calls for annual sales to rise to as much as $9.6 billion in fiscal 2022.

The post 3 Things to Watch in the Stock Market This Week appeared first on The Motley Fool

Original source: The Motley Fool

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