At the end of trading today, Blockbuster will release its third-quarter report -- and it's expected to be a downer. Notes the Associated Press this morning: "The Dallas-based company already has said it is comfortable with analyst estimates projecting a third-quarter loss of 16 cents per share on revenue of $1.27 billion." Which is bad, but it could have been worse; this time last year, it lost 20 cents per share. Someone with whom I spoke last night who knows Blockbuster very, very well says the chain's looking good -- and that the stores will be its savior, just you wait. Though maybe not the rental ATM.
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The Motley Fools, looking into their widescreen crystal balls for bits, offer their own analysis of CEO Jim Keyes and company's fortunes with prognostications ranging from boom to inevitable bankruptcy: "I believe in Keyes, but he may have taken on a mission impossible here. I hear the Indiana Jones theme in the background as Blockbuster's turnaround races against the clock." But here's a possible look at the company's future: In Florida, it's testing a new pricing program with three different levels of membership -- ones that allow rentals by the day, by the week or by the month, by the way. --Robert Wilonsky