5 Dates for Savvy Investors to Circle in September
It could be raining consumer electronics during the first few days of the month. Samsung (SSNLF) is hosting its Unpacked press event to debut new smartphones, tablets and other gadgetry on Sept. 3 in New York, Beijing and Berlin, but Google's (GOOG) (GOOGL) Motorola Mobility takes the limelight the following day with its media powwow in Chicago.
Motorola is widely expected to introduce its Moto 360 smart watch at the event. It also wouldn't be a surprise if it updates its Moto X and Moto G Android smartphones. Samsung and Motorola will draw plenty of interest here, but the real magnetic event for consumer tech should follow a few days later.
When Apple (AAPL) speaks, everybody listens. Several reports have surfaced in August pointing to Sept. 9 as the day when consumer tech giant will introduce its new smartphone. The loudest chatter surrounding the new iPhone 6 is that it will be larger in size than the iPhone 5s and possibly come with an improved scratch-resistant screen.
However, even in a world where so much information is leaked beforehand, it always seems as if Apple has a few surprises in store. Asian suppliers can be chatty when it comes to hardware specs, but software enhancements tend to stay under wraps until Apple performs the big reveal.
It also probably won't just be the iPhone 6 being shown off. Apple will likely be updating another product line or two and diving into a new product category. With Apple's stock hitting all-time highs in recent days, it can't afford to disappoint.
Lululemon athletica (LULU) has been a downward-facing dog for investors since sales growth began to decelerate and margins began to contract. We'll get another update in a few days when the high-end yoga apparel retailer reports its fiscal second-quarter results.
Things haven't gone well for lululemon since it had to recall yoga pants last year because they revealed too much when some wearers engaged in certain yoga positions. Traffic began to slow at its stores after that, and investors felt the pain. Shares of lululemon have shed roughly half of their value since peaking 15 months ago.
One of the better proxies for the economy in general is FedEx (FDX). Corporate America and consumers have to be doing pretty well if we're springing for speedy parcel and document deliveries, and that naturally shows in FedEx's results.
FedEx reports on the morning of Sept. 17. Analysts see a modest 4 percent improvement in revenue. They also see earnings per share soaring 27 percent, but that's a better metric of FedEx's operations than the top-line reading, which is the real indicator here of overall business growth.
Windows 8 hasn't set the world on fire despite its many revolutionary features. Microsoft (MSFT) may be ready to move on. Sources tell popular tech blog The Verge that the software giant will introduce Windows 9 at the end of the month.
This would come at a good time for Microsoft. With tablet sales slowing, we're seeing the PC market showing signs of life. Desktops and portables running Microsoft's operating system would really get a boost if Windows 9 raises the bar without alienating computer users the way we saw with the Windows 8 rollout.
Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz has no position in any stocks mentioned. The Motley Fool recommends Apple, FedEx, Google (A and C shares), and lululemon athletica. The Motley Fool owns shares of Apple, Google (A and C shares), and Microsoft. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days.