American Express Company Third Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component American Express Company (NYSE:AXP) will unveil its latest earnings on Wednesday, October 19, 2011. American Express is a global payments, network, and travel company that offers credit card products and travel-related services to consumers and businesses on an international scale.

American Express Company Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for profit of 96 cents per share, a rise of 6.7% 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 97 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has been unchanged at 96 cents during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting net income of $3.98 per share, a rise of 16.7% from last year.

Past Earnings Performance: Last quarter, the company beat estimates by 9 cents, coming in at profit of $1.07 a share versus the estimate of net income of 98 cents a share. It marked the fourth straight quarter of beating estimates.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $7.58 billion in revenue this quarter, a rise of 7.8% from the year ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $30.02 billion for the year, a rise of 7.9% from last year’s revenue of $27.82 billion.

Analyst Ratings: 13 out of 18 analysts surveyed (72.2%) have a buy rating on American Express Company.. This is below the mean analyst rating of 10 competitors, which average 76.8% buy ratings.

A Look Back: In the second quarter, profit rose 30.9% to $1.33 billion ($1.10 a share) from $1.02 billion (84 cents a share) the year earlier, exceeding analyst expectations. Revenue rose 9.7% to $8.2 billion from $7.47 billion.

Key Stats:

The company has seen net income rise in three straight quarters. Net income rose 33% in the first quarter and 48.3% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year.

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue rose 5.8% in the first quarter from the year earlier, climbed 12.4% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter and 16.5% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year.

Competitors to Watch: Discover Financial Services (NYSE:DFS), Capital One Financial Corp. (NYSE:COF), Bank of America Corp. (NYSE:BAC), Visa Inc. (NYSE:V), MasterCard Incorporated (NYSE:MA), Citigroup Inc. (NYSE:C), JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE:JPM), SLM Corporation (NYSE:SLM), First Investors Financial Services Group (FIFS), and CompuCredit Holdings Corp (NASDAQ:CCRT).

Stock Price Performance: During July 20, 2011 to October 13, 2011, the stock price had fallen $5.54 (-10.7%) from $51.87 to $46.33. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between August 18, 2011 and August 31, 2011 when shares rose for 10-straight days, rising 12.2% (+$5.40) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between May 6, 2011 and May 13, 2011 when shares fell for six-straight days, falling 1.4% (-70 cents) over that span. Shares are up $4.08 (+9.7%) year to date.

(Source: Xignite Financials)

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