The Top Eight Earnings for the Week Ahead

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Earnings season is far from over, but roughly three quarters of the stocks in the Standard & Poor’s 500 Index stocks have now reported their earnings for the first calendar quarter of 2014. Many companies have proven to be big winners, and many have been duds. The theme continues with much of the growth coming from cost controls rather than great revenue stories.

24/7 Wall St. has identified its top ten earnings to watch for the week ahead. Earnings estimates and consensus price targets are from Thomson Reuters. Additional color has been added on each.

American international Group Inc. (NYSE: AIG) is set to report on Monday, and the thought of the Barron’s tout with shares potentially doubling in 5 years was hard to ignore for long-term investors. Earnings estimates are $1.07 EPS and $9.35 billion in revenue. For the coming quarter, estimates are $1.05 EPS and $8.6 billion in revenue. At $52.35, AIG’s consensus price target is $55.95.

Pfizer Inc. (NYSE: PFE) is set to report earnings on Monday. With its overseas deal in the air and with Big Pharma looking to make structural changes, this will be watched more closely than usual. Earnings estimates are $0.55 EPS (versus $0.51 a year ago) and a drop of 10% in revenue to $12.1 billion. For the coming quarter, estimates are $0.58 EPS and $12.5 billion in revenue. Restructuring and spin-offs have created a mix and match on year ago figures. Pfizer’s $30.75 share price compares to a consensus price target of $34.20.

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The Walt Disney Co. (NYSE: DIS) is set to report earnings on Tuesday, and the Star Wars benefits are not yet in the price of the stock. Earnings estimates are $0.95 EPS (versus $0.79 a year ago) and revenue growth of over 6% to $11.23 billion. For the coming quarter, estimates are $1.20 EPS and $12.23 billion in revenue. Disney’s $80.31 share price compares to a $84.92 consensus price target.

Whole Foods Market Inc. (NASDAQ: WFM) is also on deck to report after Tuesday’s close. The organic and cleaner grocery chain is still valued as if it was a luxury retail chain rather than as a grocery chain. Earnings estimates are $0.41 EPS (versus $0.38 a year ago) and $3.34 billion in revenue. For the coming quarter, estimates are $0.42 EPS and $3.43 billion in revenue. Whole Foods remains challenged by competition and more conservative guidance of late. At $49.65, Whole Foods is down from a peak above $65, and the consensus price target is $59.21.

Duke Energy Corp. (NYSE: DUK) reports on Wednesday. It is one of the top power companies in America with its $51.5 billion market cap, making it a must watch when you consider that utilities are close to all-time highs and remain of interest to cautious investors seeking income. Earnings estimates are $1.12 EPS and $6.44 billion in revenue. For the coming quarter, estimates are $0.99 EPS and $6.14 billion in revenue. At $72.86, its 52-week high is $75.25 and the consensus price target is $75.94.

Symantec Corp. (NASDAQ: SYMC) is back in its funk, and the move away from PCs has left the internet security powerhouse much less relevant. Its report is expected on Wednesday, and earnings estimates are $0.42 EPS (down from $0.44 a year ago) and $1.65 billion in revenue (down almost 6%). For the coming quarter, estimates are $0.43 EPS and $1.64 billion in revenue. At $20.37, Symantec is down from a 52-week high of $27.10, but the consensus price target is only $22.07. Symantec also pays close to a 3% yield.

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IntercontinentalExchange Group, Inc. (NYSE: ICE) reports on Thursday. The NYSE-owner will soon show us just how much the pressure against high-frequency trading will hurt its business in the quarters ahead. Our guess: a lot, but not at all for the first quarter report. We would caution that the NYSE and ICE merger is still relatively freshly completed, and analysts are often very off when it comes to integrating companies. Earnings estimates are $2.58 EPS and $922.9 million in revenue. For the coming quarter, estimates are $2.75 EPS and $941.9 million in revenue. At $202.30, its 52-week high is $229.50 and the consensus price target is $238.50.

The Priceline Group Inc. (NASDAQ: PCLN) reports on Thursday. The everything-travel company has grown up to the point that it dumped the priceline.com name. We cannot help but wonder if Priceline will split its stock or not, as we have suggested after the Apple split. Earnings estimates are $6.91 EPS (versus $5.76 a year ago) and $1.63 billion in revenue (up 25%). For the coming quarter, estimates are $12.27 EPS and $2.11 billion in revenue. The stock closed at $1,179.93 on Friday, its all-time high is up above $1,378, and the consensus price target is $1,441.

These are far from the only important earnings in the week ahead. These are just the ones we will likely be keeping the closest eyes on.

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