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As Hurricane Sandy directs its threatening gaze toward the East Coast, a number of U.S. companies have chosen to postpone the release of their scheduled quarterly announcements until after the storm's havoc hits the Street. Pharmaceutical issue Pfizer Inc. (NYSE:PFE - 25.43), satellite radio concern Sirius XM Radio Inc (NASDAQ:SIRI - 2.82), and energy companies Entergy Corporation (NYSE:ETR - 72.10) and NRG Energy Inc (NYSE:NRG - 21.94) are among those whose earnings results will be held over post-Sandy.
The strong arm of Sandy has muscled PFE into moving its earnings release to Thursday, Nov. 1, from Tuesday, Oct. 30. The equity has ticked steadily higher over the past 52 weeks, with the shares adding 28.3% in that time. On the charts, the stock has enjoyed a steady lift from its ascending 32-day moving average, to the delight of investors. Ahead of earnings, short interest stands at a minute 0.8% of the stock's float. Additionally, the equity's 10-day International Securities Exchange (ISE)/Chicago Board Options Exchange (CBOE)/NASDAQ OMX PHLX (PHLX) call/put volume ratio of 3.89 ranks higher than 84% of other such readings taken in the past year, suggesting traders have lately been taking the bullish route toward betting on the Dow component. Wall Street expects PFE to post a profit of 53 cents per share in its third quarter.
SIRI, originally slated to report earnings tomorrow, will now release its results on Thursday, Nov. 1. On a technical basis, the shares have added nearly 23% since SIRI's last quarterly report, released in early August. Plus, on a relative-strength basis, the stock has outperformed the broader S&P 500 Index (SPX) by almost 29 percentage points during the past 60 sessions. Despite this recent rebound, short-term speculators aren't sure which way to place their pre-earnings bets on SIRI, as evidenced by the equity's Schaeffer's put/call open interest ratio (SOIR) of 0.44. Specifically, this ratio ranks in the 50th percentile of its annual range, implying it's a dead heat among near-term put and call players. For SIRI's third quarter, analysts are looking for a per-share profit of two cents.
New Orleans-based ETR was originally scheduled to step up to the earnings plate tomorrow morning, but will instead unveil its quarterly results next Monday, Nov. 5. On a technical basis, ETR has shed a modest 1.3% in 2012; however, the stock jumped 2.4% on Friday after the company announced a quarterly dividend payment of 83 cents per share. The post-dividend jump helped ETR solidify its foothold atop its 10-day moving average -- a trendline that has provided support for the stock since early September. Expectations for ETR are low among the brokerage bunch, though. No fewer than 11 out of 13 analysts maintain a "hold" or worse suggestion toward the stock, while the average 12-month price target of $71.71 represents a discount to the equity's current perch. Wall Street is calling for a per-share profit of $2.03 for ETR's third quarter.
New Jersey's own NRG has rescheduled its quarterly announcement to Friday, Nov. 2, from Tuesday, Oct. 30. The stock is currently sporting a formidable 21.1% year-to-date gain, which has caught the eye of option players. At the ISE, CBOE, and PHLX, traders have bought to open 19.13 calls for every put during the past 50 sessions. This ratio ranks in the 94th percentile of its annual range, indicating calls have been bought to open over puts at an accelerated clip in recent months. The company has a mixed history in the earnings confessional, besting Wall Street's bottom-line expectations in three of the last four quarters. Analysts have forecast a third-quarter profit of 45 cents.