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Of course, some aren't as strong, slipping on poor guidance/performance.
First-quarter earnings reports can be a harbinger of things to come for the full year. Short-term fluctuations are common as investors buy into stocks with strong starts to the year and exit companies that lower guidance figures.
This earnings season started a couple of weeks ago when Alcoa reported, and this week is one of the busiest.
Here are the biggest names that have already reported earnings today, and the companies to keep an eye on after today's closing bell…
Hot Stocks Today: The Morning Movers
The Boeing Co. (NYSE: BA) reported adjusted earnings per share (EPS) of $1.76, up from $1.73 last year. However, non-adjusted earnings were $1.28 per share on revenue of $965 million, which was down from $1.44 per share and $1.11 billion last year. For investors, the most important figure was the 8% revenue increase Boeing reported in the first quarter. BA revenue was $20.47 billion, and the increase was primarily attributed to commercial aircraft delivery. Boeing delivered 161 jets in the quarter, up from 137 last year. BA stock was up 3% in morning trading.
Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE: PG) announced that Q1 profit rose 2% to $2.61 billion, or $0.90 per share. That was up from $2.57 billion, or $0.88 per share in 2013. While earnings were up, they fell below consensus estimates, which had pegged the company for EPS of $1.02. PG claimed that foreign-exchange fluctuations prevented sales growth from being higher. The company saw its fabric care and home care division (which accounts for one third of the firm's sales) post a 6% increase in sales. PG stock was down more than 2% in morning trading.
Delta Air Lines Inc. (NYSE: DAL) shares jumped more than 7% Wednesday morning after the company reported EPS of $0.25 on net income of $213 million in Q1. That was up from EPS of $0.01 and net income of $7 million in the first quarter of 2013. Excluding items, EPS was $0.33, up from a consensus estimate of $0.29 for the quarter. The company reported a 5% increase in passenger revenue and is expecting second-quarter operating margins between 14% and 16%. DAL shares were up 7% this morning and touched a 52-week high of $37.41.
General Dynamics Corp. (NYSE: GD) reported EPS of $1.71, or $595 million, up from $1.62 and $571 million in the first quarter of 2013. That beat estimates of $1.64 per share. While earnings were up, revenue fell 1% to $7.3 billion. However, the $7.3 billion in revenue beat the Street's estimate of $7.2 billion. The company detailed that sales from its aerospace division were up 20%, while sales of its combined defense divisions dropped 8%. Shares of GD were up almost 3% in morning trading
Dow Chemical Co. (NYSE: DOW) beat earnings when it posted adjusted EPS of $0.79 per share today, compared to a consensus estimate of $0.71. The company's profit was $1.05 billion, up 65% from the $635 million last year. DOW reported quarterly revenue of $14.46 billion, which was also up from $14.38 billion in 2013. The company announced that its gross margins climbed to 18.9% from 18.6%, thanks in part to research and development spending dropping 10%. DOW stock was up more than 3% Wednesday morning.
With those companies already reporting earnings today, investors now shift their attention to the biggest companies reporting after the bell…