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What Apple and Amazon earnings may be able to tell us about this economy

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People visit the Apple Store in Grand Central Station on April 18, 2022.

Traders are looking to the earnings reports of tech giants, like Apple and Amazon, to see how consumers are feeling and spending. Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images

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It’s a big week for tech firm earnings reports. Google and Microsoft have already reported on Thursday, after markets close, it’s Apple and Amazon’s turn.

Traders are looking to the tech behemoths for some good news.

“The street right now, it’s a white-knuckle period,” said Dan Ives, a managing director at Wedbush Securities. “We need to see strong numbers from both Apple, as well as Amazon, to give a shot in the arm of confidence, especially in this Fed hiking cycle.”

The Fed raised interest rates in March by a quarter of a percentage point and Chairman Jerome Powell said a half point hike is on the table in May. 

But that’s not all businesses are dealing with: The supply chain is still an issue and, of course, there’s inflation

Both Apple and Amazon — at their core — depend on people buying stuff, said Scott Kessler at Third Bridge. So what they tell investors could be a good indicator for the larger consumer economy. 

“They should give us a pretty good sense as to how the consumer is feeling, how the consumer is spending.”

And, he said, both of these companies benefited quite a bit from the pandemic. So he wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a hangover that tags along as things return to normal.

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