NEW YORK, NY -- (Marketwire) -- 07/31/12 -- Stock markets rallied Thursday after comments from the European Central Bank chief Mario Draghi signaled the ECB was ready to take action. "Within our mandate, the ECB is ready to do whatever it takes to preserve the euro," Mario Draghi said at a recent conference. "And believe me, it will be enough." The SPDR S&P 500 ETF (SPY) gained 1.95 percent last Friday. The Paragon Report examines investing opportunities in the S&P 500 Index and provides equity research on Amazon.com, Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) and Expedia Inc. (NASDAQ: EXPE).
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Recent data compiled by Bloomberg shows that out of the 263 S&P 500 companies who have reported quarterly results approximately 72 percent of them have exceeded analyst projections. Data showed that analysts had projected second-quarter profits to decline by 2.1 percent.
"The theme coming out in earnings is companies are coming in short in revenue but still beat on earnings. Analysts have moved their targets (lower) and companies still are lean and mean and are able to generate profit," said Kim Forrest, senior equity research analyst at Fort Pitt Capital.
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Despite posting lower earnings as a result of increased spending on order-fulfillment centers shares of Amazon surged over 8 percent last Friday. "The guidance for the third-quarter operating income is lower than it's probably ever been and the stock's up," Needham & Co. analyst Kerry Rice said. "This is not an earnings story. This is a demand, top- line-driven story."
Shares of Expedia, the online travel company, soared over 20 percent after the company reported second quarter sales that topped analysts' estimates. For the second quarter 2012 the company reported total sales increased 14 percent to $1.04 billion, beating the average analyst estimate of 988.7 million according to Bloomberg.
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