7 Big Companies Expected to Beat Earnings

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Earnings reporting season is almost upon us, with a few of the major banks kicking it off on Friday. But with this season comes high expectations, as the Nasdaq and S&P 500 have risen recently to near all-time highs. This earnings season will be driven by some of the biggest companies in the United States, but they have to hit their targets first if the markets want to keep up their momentum.

24/7 Wall St. has put together a snapshot of some of the major companies reporting this earnings season that absolutely must make forecasts to keep pace.

It goes without saying that if these major companies miss their earnings estimates, or even offer weak guidance, it could spell disaster. Out of the group that has been selected, the average gain so far in 2018 has been roughly 52%, easily outpacing the broad markets. With this much momentum built up, one miss on the quarterly report could easily derail any of these companies. And if these companies want to keep their status as the top dogs in their respective industries, as well as their gains, they must beat this quarter.

We have included some brief color and background on each company, as well as their consensus earnings estimates from Thomson Reuters, trading history and market cap.

Be advised that the earnings and revenue estimates may change ahead of the formal reports, and some companies may change reporting dates as well.

Amazon

Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ: AMZN) is the absolute leader in online retail and dominant player in cloud storage business, and it remains one of the top picks on Wall Street. There’s no wonder why, as so far in 2018 Amazon has seen its shares add about 49%. This e-commerce empire is expected to report earnings on July 26, although no formal date has been announced yet.

Analysts have been chasing this stock higher for what seems like forever. But since its most recent earnings report, when there was a consensus target of $1,669.74, analysts have shifted their targets up 10.7% on average to a new consensus of $1,848.12.

Looking ahead to the coming quarter, Thomson Reuters consensus estimates call for $2.54 in earnings per share (EPS) and $53.44 billion in revenue. The same period of last year reportedly had EPS of $0.40 and $37.95 billion in revenue.

Shares of Amazon were last seen trading at $1,739.02, with a 52-week range of $931.75 to $1,763.10. The company has a total market cap of nearly $844 billion.

Electronic Arts

Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA) is a leading video game developer that should benefit from not only the continuing rise in new console sales but the rising trend of mobile gaming. This company produces top-selling games and related content and services under the EA brand in various categories, including action-adventure, role-playing, racing and first-person shooter games. So far in 2018, EA shares have climbed about 38%. The company is scheduled to report earnings on July 26.

At the end of April, just prior to the release of its fiscal fourth-quarter report, analysts had an average consensus target of $137.50 for the stock. Since then, they have hiked their targets about 8.5% to the new consensus of $149.24.

The consensus estimates are $0.07 in EPS and $744.46 million in revenue for the fiscal first quarter. In the same period of last year, it said it had $0.31 in EPS on revenue of $775 million.

Shares of EA closed most recently at $144.64. The 52-week trading range is $99.63 to $147.13, and the company has a total market cap of $44 billion.

Facebook

Facebook Inc. (NASDAQ: FB) operates the largest social network, with over 2.0 billion monthly active users and over 1.4 billion daily active users. The company generates revenue from advertising and from payments, with over 95% of revenue from advertising. So far in 2018, Facebook shares have gained roughly 16%. The company is scheduled to report earnings on July 25.

While this stock saw a hiccup in March, it has not stopped analysts from raising their targets. When Facebook last reported earnings in April, analysts had a consensus target of $217.90. Since that time, they have raised their targets an average of 4% to the new consensus of $226.73.

For this quarter, consensus estimates are $1.72 in EPS and $13.34 billion in revenue. In the second quarter of last year, Facebook posted $1.32 in EPS and $9.32 billion in revenue.

Shares of Facebook were last seen at $204.74. The 52-week range is $149.02 to $205.80, and the total market cap is $593 billion.