Airgas Third Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Airgas, Inc. (NYSE:ARG) will unveil its latest earnings tomorrow, Thursday, January 24, 2013. Airgas, through its subsidiaries, distributes industrial, medical, and specialty gases and hardgoods in the United States. It offers a range of gases, including nitrogen and helium, as well as welding and fuel gases. .

Airgas, Inc. Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average analyst estimate is for profit of $1.08 per share, a rise of 11.3% from the company’s actual earnings for the year-ago quarter. During the past three months, the average estimate has moved down from $1.15. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has been unchanged at $1.08 during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting net income of $4.55 per share, a rise of 10.7% from last year.

Past Earnings Performance: The company is looking to top analyst estimates this quarter after trailing for the two previous quarters. Last quarter, it missed estimates by reporting profit of $1.05 per share against an estimate of net income of $1.06 per share. The quarter before that, it missed expectations by 2 cents.

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A Look Back: In the second quarter, profit rose 4.3% to $81 million ($1.03 a share) from $77.7 million ($1.01 a share) the year earlier, but fell short analyst expectations. Revenue rose 3.6% to $1.23 billion from $1.19 billion.

Here’s how Airgas traded following its last earnings report 3 months ago and leading up to its upcoming earnings report this week:

ARG

Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $1.19 billion in revenue this quarter, a rise of 3.5% from the year-ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $4.97 billion for the year, a rise of 4.6% from last year’s revenue of $4.75 billion.

Analyst Ratings: With 10 analysts rating the stock a buy, none rating it a sell and four rating the stock a hold, there are indications of a bullish stance by analysts.

Key Stats:

This upcoming earnings announcement will be a chance to build on positive earnings momentum over the last three quarters. Net income rose 41.5% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year and 21.3% in the first quarter before increasing again in the second quarter.

On the top line, the company is looking to build on four-straight revenue increases heading into this earnings announcement. Revenue rose 11.5% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year, 12.6% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year and 8% in the first quarter before increasing again in the second quarter.

Balance Sheet Analysis: The company’s current ratio of assets to liabilities came in at 1.55 last quarter. The current ratio is an indication of a firm’s liquidity and ability to meet creditor demands and generally, for every dollar the company owes in the short term, it has that figure available in assets that can be converted to cash in the short term.

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