Wall Street This Week: Theme Parks Ride, GoDaddy Strides
Monday -- Passing the Keys
The new trading weeks kicks off with Avis Budget (CAR) reporting quarterly results after Monday's market close. The auto rental giant has been acquiring smaller players in this highly fragmented market, becoming a great proxy for the state of car rentals.
The market isn't exactly excited about Avis Budget's near-term prospects. The stock is trading a lot closer to its 52-week low than its high and analysts see quarterly profits clocking in flat with the prior year's showing. The good news is that Avis Budget has beaten Wall Street forecasts every single quarter over the past year. It will need to put the pedal to the metal if it wants to keep that streak going.
Tuesday -- You Must Be This Tall to Ride
We'll get a good snapshot of how the country's theme and amusement parks are doing Tuesday with Disney (DIS) and Cedar Fair (FUN) reporting fresh financials. Disney, naturally, runs the world's most popular theme parks, entertaining more than 134 million guests worldwide last year. Cedar Fair is one of the largest operators of regional amusement parks. It's the company behind Cedar Fair in Ohio, Knott's Berry Farm in California and several other hometown favorites.
Summer is peak season for the industry and the fundamentals have been encouraging. Gas prices, an important component of family road trips, are reasonably low. The economy's improving and consumer confidence is expanding. It's probably been a great summer for a roller-coaster ride and we'll know more come Tuesday.
Wednesday -- Master of Your Domain
GoDaddy (GDDY) went public in March, and Wednesday it will discuss its first full quarter as a public company. GoDaddy is the country's leading registrar of domain names, arming consumers and companies with an online presence.
GoDaddy has yet to turn a profit, but it's having no problem attracting a growing user base. Revenue climbed 23 percent last year and analysts see a 15 percent uptick in 2015. Wall Street pros are bracing for another quarterly deficit Wednesday on continuing top-line growth.
Thursday -- Just Another Fish Tale
Two days after Disney and Cedar Fair report, we have SeaWorld Entertainment (SEAS) splashing down with its latest financials. The theme park operator has struggled with declining attendance at its theme parks since being called out in the critical "Blackfish" documentary two years ago.
Attendance did bounce back during the first quarter, but that was mostly the result of the seasonally potent Easter holiday falling in March this year. (It took place in April last year.) That should make this a challenging second quarter, but if attendance is up for the entire second half of the year when pitted against the first half of last year, it would definitely be a sign that the notorious marine-life park operator is on the cusp of a turnaround.
Friday -- Watch Out
Apple (AAPL) has been the only one selling its bar-raising smartwatch, but that changes Friday, when Best Buy (BBY) begins offering the Apple Watch. It won't be available at all Best Buy stores right away. Friday's rollout will be at just 100 of its more than 1,400 retail locations. Another 200 stores will begin stocking the smartwatch later this year. It will also be available to anyone in the U.S. through BestBuy.com, though it's probably just as easy to buy it through Apple.com in that case.
Apple's refusal to spell out how many Apple Watch devices it sold during its debut quarter has been seen as problematic by some, but it's too early to call it a flop. Distribution into non-Apple locations matters and we'll be getting the first taste of that Friday.
Motley Fool contributor Rick Munarriz owns shares of SeaWorld Entertainment and Walt Disney. The Motley Fool recommends and owns shares of Apple and Walt Disney. Try any of our Foolish newsletter services free for 30 days, and check out our free report for one great stock to buy for 2015 and beyond.