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Best January in 4 Years Heads for Its Close; XOM, CAT, GM & More Report

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Tuesday, January 31st, 2023

Pre-market futures have fought back from triple-digit deficits on some better-than-expected earnings results ahead of the bell and another inflation metric ticking down favorably. At this hour, the Dow is +35 points, the S&P 500 is +7 and the Nasdaq +10 points. The reversal to positive territory began directly following the inflation number.

That number in question came from the Q4 Employment Cost Index: +1.0% on headline, dow 10 bps from the +1.1% expected and the +1.2% we saw the previous quarter. This is notably down from the +1.4% we saw for Q1 and the lowest we’d seen since Q4 of 2021. It’s not a drastic move, but notable in that we’re now back down beneath the 2022 inflation “bubble.”

ExxonMobil (XOM - Free Report) beat Q4 estimates this morning on record-high net gains of $56 billion in the quarter. Earnings of $3.40 per share outperformed the Zacks consensus by 8 cents. Revenues came in a tad light, however, at $95.43 billion — a miss of -5.57%. Profit margins have reached +14% in the quarter. It’s the company’s third-straight earnings beat. For more on XOM’s earnings, click here.

Caterpillar (CAT - Free Report) posted its first earnings miss since Q1 2020, with $3.86 per share missing the Zacks consensus $3.95, reportedly on foreign exchange headwinds. Revenues of $16.6 billion topped the $12.89 billion expected — far outdoing the $13.8 billion reported in the year-ago quarter.Shares are flat on the news; shares are up +9% year to date. For more on CAT’s earnings, click here.

General Motors (GM - Free Report) improved on expectations for both earnings and sales in its Q4 this morning, with earnings of $2.12 per share zooming past the $1.68 expected (and $1.35 per share in the year-ago quarter), on $43.11 billion in revenues, outpacing the $41.31 billion analysts were projecting. The company brought a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) into the earnings report; with net income guidance higher for 2023, we expect this to improve.

McDonald’s (MCD - Free Report) was able to raise its prices in the quarter, leading to a +5.28% positive earnings surprise to $2.59 per share, on a +3.9% surprise on the top line to $5.93 billion. The Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) stock is selling off a bit in today’s pre-market, however; shares are flat year-to-date so far. For more on MCD’s earnings, click here.

Pfizer (PFE - Free Report) also beat estimates on both top and bottom lines for its Q4 report this morning, with earnings $1.14 per share beating consensus by +10.68%, and sales of $24.29 billion in the quarter eking out a top-line beat of +0.36%. The stock, however, continues to head south in today’s pre-market, even as shares are -15% year to date. For more on PFE’s earnings, click here.

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