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Apple clashes with energy to save earnings season

Federal Reserve’s FOMC meeting also scheduled for this week

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Apple earnings look to rescue tech sector again.

Expected strong profits from Apple Inc. and consumer-based companies go up against a rash of weak energy sector results this week in a battle to try to save the S&P 500 from a projected earnings loss for the quarter.

U.S. stocks finished up their fourth consecutive week of gains Friday, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, -0.13% rising 2.5%, the S&P 500 IndexSPX, -0.19% advancing 2.1%, and the Nasdaq Composite Index COMP, +0.06% gaining 3% on the back of earnings beats from tech heavyweights.

Along with the deluge of corporate results, the Federal Reserve holds its two-day Federal Open Market Committee meeting , ending on Wednesday. While many are not expecting a rate hike this week, at least one former Fed staff member thinks the central bank needs to start raising rates as soon as possible.

On the earnings front, about one-third of the S&P 500 reports results, with six of those companies also Dow components. More than a third of the S&P 500 has already reported results for the quarter.

Dow components reporting this week
Report DateCompany/ticker (FactSet EPS / revenue consensus estimates)
Tues., Oct. 27
Fri., Oct 30
As has been the case over the past few quarters, Apple AAPL, -3.19% is expected to do a lot of the heavy lifting for tech sector earnings.

The S&P 500 tech sector is currently looking at a 2.1% rise in earnings from a year ago, but without Apple’s contribution, the sector would be facing a 3% decline, according to John Butters, senior earnings analyst at FactSet.

Apple again to tech sector’s earnings rescue.

Overall, the S&P 500 faces a 3.8% decline in earnings from the year ago quarter, an improvement over the week ago trajectory of a 4.6% decline, owing to better-than-expected results last week from companies such as Microsoft Corp.MSFT, +2.61% , Alphabet Inc. GOOGL, +1.64% , and Inc.AMZN, +1.60%

Outside of Apple, the rest of the week is dominated by earnings from consumer-based companies like Starbucks Corp. SBUX, +1.31% Comcast Corp.CMCSA, +0.32% and Ford Motor Co. F, +0.06% and health-care related companies like Pfizer, Merck, and Gilead Sciences Inc. GILD, +0.59% Consumer discretionary earnings are projected to grow by 12.1%, and health-care earnings by 7.7% from the year-ago quarter.

But lurking at the end of the week are earnings from ExxonMobil XOM, -2.12% and Chevron CVX, -2.71% with earnings from several other energy companies during the week. Results from the energy sector, which reports in force this week, will drag on the steady improvement of S&P 500 earnings this season. Earnings in the energy sector as a whole are expected to decline by 65% from a year ago.

Other S&P 500 companies reporting this week
Report DateCompany/ticker (FactSet EPS / revenue consensus estimates)
Mon., Oct. 26
  • Edwards Lifesciences Corp. EW, -1.97% (98 cents / $599.2 million)
  • Xerox Corp. XRX, -3.00% (23 cents / $4.54 billion)
Tues., Oct. 27
  • Bristol-Myers Squibb Co. BMY, -0.94% (35 cents / $3.86 billion)
  • Gilead Sciences ($2.87 / $7.79 billion)
  • Comcast (80 cents / $18.01 billion)
  • United Parcel Service Inc. UPS, -0.58% ($1.37 / $14.41 billion)
  • Ford (46 cents / $35.55 billion)
  • Reynolds American Inc. RAI, +1.23% (54 cents / $3.07 billion)
Weds., Oct. 28
  • Amgen Inc. AMGN, +1.82% ($2.37 / $5.33 billion)
  • Walgreens Boots Alliance Inc. WBA, -0.53% (81 cents / $28.51 billion)
  • Express Scripts Holding Co. ESRX, +0.26% ($1.44 / $26.36 billion)
  • Mondelez International Inc. MDLZ, +0.58% (40 cents / $6,78 billion)
Thurs., Oct. 29
  • Starbucks (43 cents / $4.9 billion)
  • MasterCard Inc. MA, -0.16% (88 cents / $2.55 billion)
  • Altria Group Inc. MO, +0.57% (75 cents / $4.89 billion)
  • McKesson Corp. MCK, +1.38% ($3.01 / $47.83 billion)
  • Time Warner Cable Inc. TWC, +0.01% ($1.55 / $5.96 billion)
  • Aetna Inc. AET, +1.80% ($1.76 / $15.22 billion)
  • ConocoPhillips COP, -3.04% (per-share loss 36 cents / $8.04 billion)
Fri., Oct. 30

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