Salient to Investors:

Omar Aguilar at Charles Schwab Investment Mgmt said earnings clearly will drive a lot of volatility in the next two weeks as the consensus is for a pretty diverse and poor earnings season, but we’ll see many positive surprises.

Analysts project S&P 500 profits fell 1.8 percent in Q1 2013 versus their January prediction for a 1.2 percent increase.

Joe Kinahan at TD Ameritrade said CEOs have given lower and lower expectations and anybody who does not meet expectations in Q1 will be punished severely while those that beat won’t necessarily be rewarded.

The ratio of calls to puts on the VIX was at 2.93-to-1 in March, the highest since March 2010, indicating concern American companies are getting ready to report the first slump in profit since 2009.

Andrew Greeley at Acorn Derivatives Mgmt said the weaker data and earnings would encourage higher volatility after an unchallenged rally throughout Q1.

Russ Koesterich of BlackRock sees an increased risk of a correction and the best performing sector the defensives are very expensive – this is a very different rally than what people are used to. Koesterich sold smaller companies on concern the US economy is not expanding fast enough.

Valentijn Van Nieuwenhuijzen at ING Investment Mgmt says risks are rising and is not making new share purchases.

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