AFLAC Incorporated Fourth Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component AFLAC Incorporated (NYSE:AFL) will unveil its latest earnings on Tuesday, January 31, 2012. Aflac, a general business holding company, provides supplemental health and life insurance through its subsidiaries in the United States and Japan.

AFLAC Incorporated Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for profit of $1.52 per share, a rise of 14.3% from the company’s actual earnings for the same quarter a year ago. During the past three months, the average estimate has moved up from $1.50. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved up. It has been unchanged at $1.52 during the last month. Analysts are projecting profit to rise by 15.2% versus last year to $6.37.

Past Earnings Performance: Last quarter, the company reported net income of $1.66 per share versus a mean estimate of profit of. The company has beaten estimates for the past three quarters.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $6.06 billion in revenue this quarter, a rise of 14.6% from the year ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $23.24 billion for the year, a rise of 12.1% from last year’s revenue of $20.73 billion.

Analyst Ratings: Analysts are bullish on this stock with 12 analysts rating it as a buy, one rating it as a sell and five rating it as a hold.

A Look Back: In the third quarter, profit rose 7.8% to $744 million ($1.59 a share) from $690 million ($1.46 a share) the year earlier, exceeding analyst expectations. Revenue rose 11% to $5.99 billion from $5.39 billion.

Key Stats:

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue rose 2.2% in the second quarter from the year earlier, climbed 1% in the first quarter from the year-ago quarter and 15.2% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year.

The increase in profit in the third quarter broke a streak of two consecutive quarters of year-over-year profit decreases. The figure dropped 51.8% in the second quarter and 37.9% in the first quarter.

Competitors to Watch: Unum Group (NYSE:UNM), Principal Financial Group, Inc. (NYSE:PFG), Triple-S Management Corp. (NYSE:GTS), American Independence Corp. (NASDAQ:AMIC), CIGNA Corporation (NYSE:CI), WellPoint, Inc. (NYSE:WLP), Universal American Corp. (NYSE:UAM), Humana Inc. (NYSE:HUM) and HealthMarkets, Inc. (NYSE:UCI).

Stock Price Performance: During November 25, 2011 to January 25, 2012, the stock price had risen $10.11 (25.9%) from $39.05 to $49.16. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between January 13, 2012 and January 25, 2012 when shares rose for eight-straight days, rising 13.8% (+$5.98) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between May 26, 2011 and June 8, 2011 when shares fell for nine-straight days, falling 9.5% (-$4.65) over that span.

(Company fundamentals by Xignite Financials. Earnings estimates provided by Zacks)

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