5 Things to Watch This Week: CES, Gorilla Glass, Banks and Grocers


From new small gadgetry too old banking behemoths, there will be plenty of news waiting to break in the coming days. Let's go over some of the items that will help shape the week that lies ahead on Wall Street.

1. In with the New CES: This is the week that early adopters and consumer electronics buffs live for. The International Consumer Electronics Show -- or CES, for short -- kicked off on Sunday night as Qualcomm (QCOM) CEO Paul Jacobs delivered the pre-show keynote address.

The real fireworks will begin on Tuesday as exhibitors take over Las Vegas to show off their latest tech marvels.

Will tablets get smaller? Will smartphones get bigger?

This is the one time of the year that whatever happens in Vegas definitely doesn't stay there.

(Check out our CES coverage for all the latest from the show floor.)

2. Corning Releases an 800-Pound Gorilla: One of the busiest booths when CES opens on Tuesday will be #14813 in the expo center's Central Hall.

This is where Corning (GLW) will introduce the third generation of its popular Gorilla Glass.

Sponsored Links

Corning's Gorilla Glass has set the standard for smartphones and tablets given the surface's durability and scratch-resistant ways, and it's easy to see why Gorilla Glass 3 -- a new glass composition with durability enhancements -- will turn heads.

The one thing to watch here is if Gorilla Glass 3 is too good. The industry makes a ton of money from protective cases and scratch-resistant screen film covers. If Corning's new coating makes common accessories obsolete, will the industry fight back?

3. Banking on Wells Fargo: With earnings season just around the corner, the first of the major banking giants reports on Friday.

Wells Fargo (WFC) leads the parade of "too big to fail" bankers, though its financial peers will follow with their quarterly reports later this month.

Analysts are upbeat. An improving housing market is helping offset concerns that rock-bottom yields will lead to customers pulling their CDs and savings accounts. Wall Street sees a profit of $0.90 a share out of Wells Fargo, well ahead of the $0.73 a share that Wells Fargo posted a year earlier.

4. Clean Up on Aisle Four: One of the biggest unpleasant surprises of 2012 was that some grocers got crushed, even though supermarket operators are supposed to be all-weather investments.

SuperValu (SVU) was a big loser in 2012, shedding nearly 70 percent of its value. The stock popped 19 percent higher last week on buyout news, but let's not let the disappointing grocer off so easy.

SuperValu took a hit after suspending its once meaty dividend this past summer, and it has been closing down stores. The chain is in retreat, and that's where things stand as it prepares to discuss its latest quarter come Thursday.

Analysts see a profit of $0.06 a share, just a quarter of the $0.24 a share that it rang up a year earlier.

5. Keeping the Gains Coming: Fueled by the last-minute resolution that temporarily averted the fiscal cliff, equity prices rallied last week. The Dow checked in with a pop of 3.8 percent on the week. Tech stocks did even better, as the Nasdaq Composite checked in with a 4.8 percent ascent.

Don't bother working the math on what a historic year 2013 will be if the rest of the year continues at that pace. It won't happen.

However, after wrapping up 2012 with returns that surprisingly bested the historical average, the strong start to the new year was encouraging.

Motley Fool contributor Rick Aristotle Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Corning and Wells Fargo & Company. The Motley Fool owns shares of Corning, Qualcomm, Inc., Supervalu, and Wells Fargo & Company.