2 Major Earnings Reports to Watch After the Close

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Both Nike Inc. (NYSE: NKE) and Micron Technology Inc. (NASDAQ: MU) are scheduled to release their most recent quarterly reports after the markets close on Thursday. These are the two biggest companies reporting this week, and after the down day that has been Thursday, the markets need a win to get back on track.

For Micron, Thomson Reuters has consensus estimates of $2.74 in earnings per share (EPS) on $7.28 billion in revenue. The same period of last year reportedly had EPS of $0.90 and $4.65 billion in revenue.

Recently, Nomura Instinet issued the most bullish call in the history of Micron. The analyst, Romit Shah, reiterated a Buy rating for Micron and raised the price target to $100 from $55. Shah believes that this stock is on the verge of another major breakout.

Earnings estimates for the chipmaker also were raised. The firm expects to see per-share earnings for the 2019 fiscal year (ending in August) of $12.22, up from $11.78. Keep in mind that the consensus estimate is stuck at $8.71 per share.

Overall, Nomura Instinet sees DRAM pricing resuming an upward trend in the second quarter. This directly contradicts what Wall Street is calling for, which is about a 5% to 6% decline over the next four quarters.

Shah detailed in the report that memory prices have dropped about 3% so far in 2018, which fares well compared with the 10% to 20% seasonal decline that the market has seen in the past few years. Another prediction from Shah is that prices will rise by roughly 10% over the next six months.

As for Nike, the consensus estimates call for $0.53 in EPS on revenue of $8.85 billion. In the fiscal third quarter of last year, the company said it had $0.68 in EPS on $8.43 billion in revenue.

Nike has been the subject of much scrutiny recently after it released an internal memo detailing an investigation into workplace behavior, as well as announcing that a few of its high-level executives would be departing.

According to the memo, Nike management has become aware of reports of behavior occurring within its organization that does not reflect its core values of “inclusivity, respect, and empowerment.” In a sense, this is highlighting what many perceive as sexual harassment. And this comes at a strange time.

The memo detailed Nike’s plan for investigating and evaluating these claims going forward:

We are going to be doing a comprehensive review of our HR systems and practices along with elevating our complaint process for matters of respect issues. We will increase and invest more heavily in our diversity and inclusion teams and networks and additionally will immediately put in place an enhanced process to encourage our employees to speak up and make their voices heard.

Shares of Micron were trading down nearly 4% at $58.78 on Thursday. The stock has a 52-week trading range of $26.04 to $63.42 and a consensus analyst price target of $66.68.

Nike shares were last seen down over 1% at $65.44, with a consensus price target of $68.68 and a 52-week range of $50.35 to $70.25.

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