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Kevin Matras   
Profit from the Pros
By Kevin Matras
Executive Vice President
Zacks Investment Research

Stocks Soared On Friday And For The Week On Strong Earnings

Stocks soared on Friday and for the week, for the second week in a row.

For the week, the Dow was up 1.58%, the S&P was up 1.82%, and the Nasdaq was up 2.20%. But it felt like much more since the major indexes, from their intra-week lows, were up 3.46% for the Dow, 3.27% for the S&P, and 3.49% for the Nasdaq.

Earnings season, even though it has really only just begun, is already delivering with better than expected earnings and impressive market gains.

This week we'll get another 377 companies reporting earnings. Next week we'll get 1,054. And the week after that we'll get 1,886.

Earnings season is always an exciting time since stocks typically go up during earnings season.

And this season is looking like it will be another stellar one.

In other news, Retail Sales were up more than expected gaining 0.7% m/m vs. the consensus for -0.1%. And last month's gain was upwardly revised from 0.7% to 0.9%. Ex-Vehicles, it was up 0.8% vs. estimates for 0.4%. And Ex-Vehicles & Gas, it was up 0.7%, in line with expectations.

The Empire State Manufacturing Index came in at 19.6 vs. last month's 34.3 and views for 25.0. The monthly numbers can be volatile. The 3-month average is 24.1 while the YTD average is 21.6.

Business Inventories rose 0.6% m/m, matching last month's upwardly revised gain of the same, although just missing expectations for 0.7%.

And Consumer Sentiment came in at 71.4, down from last month's 72.8 and under estimates for 74.0.

We've got another full slate of economic reports on deck this week. But earnings reports should continue to take center stage.

Great week in the markets last week. Stocks are now within striking distance of their all-time highs with the Dow just 0.94% away, the S&P just 1.6% away, and the Nasdaq just 3.5% away.

With Q4 GDP growth expected to outpace Q3, and accelerate into the end of the year, it looks like there?s a lot more upside to go.

So make sure you're taking full advantage of it.

See you tomorrow,

Kevin Matras

Executive Vice President, Zacks Investment Research


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