Wall Street Watch This Week: Bring on the New Gadgets
The fireworks kick off on Wednesday when Nokia (NOK) and Microsoft (MSFT) will introduce their new Lumia phones.
The Nokia smartphone line will be upgraded to Microsoft's ballyhooed Windows Phone 8 mobile operating system. Rumors bubbling to the surface over the weekend call for the flagship Lumia handset to feature wireless charging capabilities and an enhanced camera.
The spotlight will shift to Amazon.com (AMZN) a day later when the leading online retailer is widely expected to introduce its new Kindle Fire.
Amazon may also be updating its traditional Kindle line on Thursday. The leading e-readers have been holding up well, but it always helps to give holiday shoppers something new to consider.
Other Things Worth Watching
• H&R Block (HRB) is one of the bigger names reporting quarterly results this week. Analysts see a sharp loss of $0.39 a share, but investors don't need to panic. Accounting is a highly seasonal business. Outside of the mid-April tax-filing deadline, it's not as if there's a lot of demand for professional tax preparation services for consumers.
• Another company set to report this week is Mattress Firm (MFRM). The fast-growing mattress retailer went public last November, and Wall Street's holding out for a "firm" profit of $0.28 a share. Selling bedding is a highly fragmented retailing niche, and Mattress Firm is hoping that consolidation will help rustle up some growth opportunities. Mattress Firm recently acquired Mattress Giant, banking on realized synergies to drive bottom-line growth. We'll see how that plays out when the company reports on Thursday. Let's hope it doesn't let the bed bugs bite.
Longtime Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz does not own shares in any of the stocks in this article. The Motley Fool owns shares of Amazon.com and Microsoft. Motley Fool newsletter services have recommended buying shares of Microsoft and Amazon.com, as well as creating a synthetic covered call position in Microsoft.