Which Consumer Staple Stock Has the Strongest Earnings Trends: Procter & Gamble, Kimberly-Clark or Colgate-Palmolive?

Earnings trends are extremely important when evaluating stocks. At Wall St. Cheat Sheet, we view increasing earnings quarter-over-quarter as a simple way to gauge whether costs and the business model are stable. Then we like to analyze whether the company is outperforming peers in the sector. This is what we call the “E-Squared” investment analysis (‘E = Earnings Are Increasing Quarter-Over-Quarter’ + ‘E = Excellent Relative Performance Versus Peers and Sector’).

Stocks with improving earnings metrics are worthy of your extra attention. Click here to discover our CHEAT SHEET stock picks now!

Here’s your Cheat Sheet to how the top 3 consumer staple stocks rank via earnings trends:

Procter & Gamble Co. (NYSE:PG): Current Price $75

Fiscal Year 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012
Revenue ($) in millions 79,260 76,690 77,570 81,100 83,680
Diluted EPS ($) 3.64 4.26 4.11 3.93 3.66

Procter & Gamble has shown a rising revenue trend after 2009. Unfortunately, EPS is quite another story, falling off every year for the last four years.

Next, our CHEAT SHEET investing framework asks us to drill down to the recent quarterly data:

Quarter Dec. 31, 2011 Mar. 31, 2012 Jun. 30, 2012 Sep. 30, 2012 Dec. 31, 2012
Revenue ($) in millions 21,740 20,190 20,210 20,740 22,180
Diluted EPS ($) 0.57 0.82 1.24 0.96 1.39

Quarterly revenue numbers are all over the place, though EPS climbed nicely between December 2011 and June 2012. Profits took a hit in the latest September, but earnings are now increasing quarter-over-quarter…