Axios Sara Fischer: “Disney will have to lower expectations for Q3”

on Aug 12, 2021
  • Disney is scheduled to report Q2 financial results today, after the bell.
  • Fischer says Disney is likely to post strong results for the second quarter.
  • Disney shares are down more than 10% from their year-to-date high.

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The Walt Disney Company (NYSE: DIS) is scheduled to report its second-quarter financial results on Thursday, after the bell. With the stock down more than 10% from its year-to-date high, what the mass media company reports for Q2 and guides for Q3 later tonight will determine if the share price will continue to slide or rebound from here.

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Sara Fischer’s remarks on CNBC’s “Squawk Box”

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According to Axios’ Sara Fischer, Disney will report strong results for the second quarter as it is up against very bad comps of last year when the pandemic was at its peak. On top of that, as Americans continued to get vaccinated in recent months, the reopening of Disney’s biggest two parks in Florida and California would also boost its Q2 results.

Fischer, however, is not so sure if Disney would be able to remain hawkish for the current quarter. On CNBC’s “Squawk Box”, she said:

“They’ll have to report third-quarter expectations a little bit lower because Delta variant of the Coronavirus is a warning sign that things could again slow down. That could be bad for the stock.”

The forecast comes a day after Southwest Airlines slashed its future guidance citing the delta variant that was increasingly making Americans cancel their bookings.

The outlook for Disney Plus

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Fischer acknowledged that Disney has lately been relying more on its streaming service Disney Plus for revenue. She, however, pointed to Roku’s results last week that disclosed streaming hours to have tanked by a massive billion hours in the recent quarter.

“When Roku said that people streamed a billion hours less last quarter, that was a huge warning sign for anyone in this business that there’s real screen fatigue happening right now. So, for Disney, that’s relying on adding subscribers for their stock to go up, that could be a huge problem,” she added.

These two risks, as per Fischer, might translate into weaker guidance for Q3 than many would have wanted. Would the investors focus more on the strong Q2 results or the weak guidance for Q3, that is yet to be revealed.

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