What to Expect When Square Reports After the Close

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Square Inc. (NYSE: SQ) is scheduled to release its first-quarter financial results after the markets close on Wednesday. The consensus estimates are calling for $0.08 in earnings per share (EPS) and $478.27 million in revenue. In the same period of last year, the mobile payments company said it had $0.06 in EPS and $306.82 million in revenue.

Despite having strong earnings in the fourth quarter, the stock still dropped by about 8% in response to the report. This was the result of the stock being up about 70% in the past 52 weeks at that point.

In the fourth quarter, Square had a gross payment volume (GPV) of $23 billion, an increase of 28% year over year and 2% sequentially. At the same time, GPV from larger sellers grew 39% year over year and accounted for 51% of total GPV, up from 47% in the fourth quarter of 2017.

At that time, Square issued guidance calling for EPS in the range of $0.06 to $0.08 and revenue between $472 million and $482 million.

Excluding Wednesday’s move, Square had outperformed the broad markets, with its stock up about 30% year to date. Over the past 52 weeks, the stock was up closer to 53%.

A few analysts weighed in on Square ahead of the report:

  • Sanford Bernstein has a Market Perform rating and an $80 price target.
  • Macquarie has an Outperform rating with a $94 price target.
  • KeyCorp’s Overweight rating comes with a $110 price target.
  • Mizuho has an $85 price target.
  • Jefferies has a Hold rating with a $73 price target.
  • SunTrust Banks has a Hold rating and a $75 price target.

Shares of Square were last seen up about 1.5% at $73.93 on Wednesday, in a 52-week range of $46.50 to $101.15. The consensus price target is $83.33.


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