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Markets Ease Lower Monday; Nike (NKE) Beats in Q4

We closed slightly in the red for the first trading day following the markets’ first up-week so far this month — all but the small-cap Russell 2000, which reached the closing bell +0.17%, a whopping 3 points. The Dow dipped -0.20%, while the S&P 500 reached -0.30% and the Nasdaq -0.74% — exactly the reverse-order of gains last week: +4.4%, +3.7%, +3.6% and +3.5%, respectively.

The S&P is back out of “bear market territory,” -19% from its highs, while the Dow is -15% since its high — both of which were in the very first week of January. The Nasdaq is still -29% from its all-time high in November of last year. Calling lows so far this year has been a treacherous game to play, but even with Monday closing lower, we’re still seeing the market bottom as the week before last.

Pending Home Sales for May this morning came in with a positive month-over-month headline number, +0.7%, from what was expected to be -4.0%, which would have matched the previous month. Year over year, pending home sales are way off pace: -13.58%, following -9.2% in April. Today’s year-over-year drop is the biggest since April 2021. Some metrics are showing a sharp drop-off in the home-selling business overall, but this print would suggest no mass exodus — as of May, at least.

Nike NKE reported fiscal Q4 earnings results which beat expectations on both top and bottom lines: earnings of 90 cents per share outpaced the Zacks consensus by 9 cents, on revenues in the quarter of $12.23 billion, easily surpassing the $12.07 billion estimated. It marks the eighth straight earnings beat for the world’s largest footwear and accessories retailer. The company had limped into earnings season with a Zacks Rank #5 (Strong Sell) recommendation.

As predicted, Covid shutdowns in China hampered Nike’s business there, -19% year over year. At one point, roughly 60% of Nike’s revenues came from China. In North America, continued supply-chain issues took the region’s total -5% in the quarter. Its Nike Direct business is +7% year over year, +11% on a “currency neutral” basis. Digital revenues, too, had a currency-neutral discrepancy: +15% year over year on headline, +18% neutral. The currency neutral designations indicates a strong dollar had cut into Nike’s margins in its fiscal Q4.

Finally today, following last week's passing of the U.S. government's stress tests, major banks are out this morning with new shareholder distribution numbers: while JPMorgan JPM said it will maintain its $1 dividend per share, citing higher capital level requirements, both Morgan Stanley MS and Bank of America BAC are increasing their dividend yields: +11% and +5%, respectively.

Advance Trade in Goods and a new Case-Shiller home price index await us Tuesday morning ahead of the opening bell. Each day we move along with a strong earnings report and leveling-off (or better) economic reads is a day we avoid another step into quicksand.

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