What to Expect From Target Earnings

Target Corp. (NYSE: TGT) is scheduled to report its fiscal third-quarter financial results before the markets open on Wednesday. The consensus estimates from Thomson Reuters call for $0.86 in earnings per share (EPS) on $17.57 billion in revenue. In the same period of the previous year, the retailer posted EPS of $0.54 and $17.73 billion in revenue.

Target’s stock hit a very rough patch over the past two years but most recently posted outstanding earnings and appears to be back. The company has increased its focus on online sales, which currently comes in at right about 3% of total sales. While that number looks low in comparison to some, the huge sales volume of the store tempers the overall numbers.

The company shut down all its Canadian locations back in May, putting about 17,600 employees out of work. While difficult, it closes a very unprofitable and ill-fated chapter, and it helps the company to move forward on concentrate on the very profitable U.S. business.

With the solid earnings, many Wall Street companies raised estimates as it appears some of Target’s strength is coming at the expense of the company’s big-box competitor Wal-Mart. With low fuel prices and job growth, consumer purchasing should continue to grow.

A few analysts weighed in on Target ahead of earnings:

  • Tesley Advisory Group has an Outperform rating.
  • Citigroup initiated coverage with a Buy rating and an $88 price target.
  • Piper Jaffray reiterated a Buy rating with a $91 price target.
  • Deutsche Bank reiterated a Hold rating with an $84 price target.

So far in 2015, Target has remained relatively flat, with the stock down only 2% year to date. However over the past 52 weeks, the stock is up 10%.

Shares of Target were trading up 1.5% at $73.37, with a consensus analyst price target of $84.91 and a 52-week trading range of $66.50 to $85.81.

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