2 Stocks Traders are Watching Before Earnings

Acme Packet, Inc. (NASDAQ:APKT) will unveil its latest earnings on Thursday, February 2, 2012. The average estimate of analysts is for net income of 19 cents per share, a decline of 9.5% from the company’s actual earnings for the same quarter a year ago. During the past three months, the average estimate has moved down from 29 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate was unchanged. It has since dropped over the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting profit of 69 cents per share, a rise of 6.2% from last year.

The company fell short of estimates last quarter after being in line with forecasts the quarter prior. In the third quarter, it reported net income of 12 cents per share versus a mean estimate of 14 cents. Two quarters ago, it reported profit of 21 cents per share. On average, analysts predict $85.2 million in revenue this quarter, a rise of 21.3% from the year ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $309.5 million for the year, a rise of 33.8% from last year’s revenue of $231.2 million.

Competitors to Watch: Sonus Networks, Inc. (NASDAQ:SONS), Telefonaktiebolaget LM Ericsson (NASDAQ:ERIC), Riverbed Technology, Inc. (NASDAQ:RVBD), Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK), Alcatel-Lucent (NYSE:ALU), Cisco Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ:CSCO), Ditech Networks Inc. (NASDAQ:DITC), Oracle Corporation (NASDAQ:ORCL), Motorola Solutions Inc (NYSE:MSI), and Motorola Mobility Hldgs. Inc (NYSE:MMI).

Cardinal Health, Inc. (NYSE:CAH) will unveil its latest earnings on Thursday, February 2, 2012. The average estimate of analysts is for net income of 76 cents per share, a rise of 10.1% from the company’s actual earnings for the same quarter a year ago. The average estimate is the same as three months ago. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate was unchanged. It also has not changed during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting profit of $3.19 per share, a rise of 19.5% from last year.

Last quarter, the company beat estimates by one cent, coming in at net income of 73 cents a share versus the estimate of profit of 72 cents a share. It marked the fourth straight quarter of beating estimates. Analysts are projecting a rise of 6% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $26.89 billion.

Competitors to Watch: AmerisourceBergen Corp. (NYSE:ABC), McKesson Corporation (NYSE:MCK), Integra LifeSciences Hldgs. Corp. (NASDAQ:IART), Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc. (NYSE:TMO), Teleflex Incorporated (NYSE:TFX), Covidien plc (NYSE:COV), General Electric Company (NYSE:GE), CVS Caremark Corporation (NYSE:CVS), Walgreen Company (NYSE:WAG), and Owens & Minor, Inc. (NYSE:OMI).

To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com