In the heart of earnings season

Yesterday after the close both GOOGLE (GOOGL) and IBM announced earnings that disappointed investors as evidenced by the market price reactions in the extended afternoon sessions.

GOOGL which was up 15 dollars today in the regular session gave up almost 20 points in the minutes following their quarterly earnings and IBM is down roughly 8 dollars in the post. These tech bellweathers’ announcements take the luster off an otherwise very nice day in the markets with the SPX closing up 19 points to 1862 during the regular session. This level in the index is particularly significant because it positions the market in the middle of the 1840-1880 trading range we have been in for most of 2014 and it is once again slightly positive for the year.

As last night’s moves in these 2 stocks point out traders need to know when earnings and dividend events are imminent. We have very useful icons which appear in the quote line or on the option chain if a stock has earnings or ex-dividend dates within the next 30 days. Traders pulling up GE in the quote line today saw the capital E icon designating confirmed earnings in the next 30 days. They are able to get the last day of trading prior to the expected earnings date by a mouse hover over the icon. For example GE shows April 16, 2014, in the earnings icon. Earnings announcements either occur before the market opens or after the market closes. That means April 16, 2014, is the last day of trading before the earnings. Further investigation in the research tab would confirm that the announcement is expected on April 17, 2014, in the pre-market.

GE Earnings





Since we are in the heart of “Earnings Season” for the first quarter of 2014, you will notice many of your quotes and symbols on your watchlists having these earnings icons.

Option traders know it is critical to be aware of when the when these events occur to consider these market moving events in deciding the appropriate trading strategy. Oftentimes avoiding earnings event potential landmines may be the best strategy. Use these icons to help you stay better informed on the symbols you’re trading.

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