Later tonight after the US market close, Nike will report FY22 Q3 earnings (ending 28 February) with analysts expecting a meager revenue growth of just 2.4% y/y and adj. EPS growth of -21% y/y as rising input costs are impacting the operating margin and Chinese nationalism is causing headwinds in the Chinese revenue segment; Nike’s big Chinese competitor is Anta Sports which reports tomorrow.
The next week’s most important earnings are list below with the names in bold being those that can either move market sentiment or an entire cluster of equities:
Monday: HK & China Gas, Nike, Pinduoduo
Tuesday: Xiaomi, Anta Sports, Foxconn, Wuxi Biologics, Partners Group, Adobe
Wednesday: Tencent, China Mobile, WuXi AppTec, IHS Markit, Yihai Kerry Arawana, Cintas, General Mills
Thursday: China Life Insurance, Industrial Bank, Foshan Haitian Flavoruing, China CITIC Bank, NIO
Friday: China Shenhua Energy, CNOOC, Bank of Communications, Anhui Conch Cement, Longfor Group, People’s Insurance, China Everbright Bank, Meituan
Earnings and equity markets during inflation
With the Fed finally acknowledging that inflation is becoming entrenched given their more hawkish rate decision last week the question for investors are what does inflation mean for equity returns and earnings growth. The lesson from the 1970s is that US companies actually grew earnings above the long-term trend growth which is maybe not that surprising given nominal growth was high relative to the subsequent decades. While earnings growth was strong from the lows in 1973 the equity returns were bad in nominal terms and a catastrophe in real terms as the inflation caused a massive contraction in the earnings multiple investors were willing to pay.10-year inflation swaps are currently priced at 3.1% and if the inflation outlook deteriorates investors will be forced to think about the relationship between multiple contraction, earnings growth and starting valuation. In our upcoming Quarterly Outlook we focus on productivity, innovation and pricing power as the three ingredients that will become important in filtering out good investments during an inflationary environment. Our stance on which themes to overweight for now has not changed and the themes are cyber security, logistics, commodity sector and defence. We have also decided to include the green transformation and batteries into this group as Europe’s massive investments in the green transformation will create a massive boost for these companies going forward.