AOL Fourth Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

AOL (NYSE:AOL) will unveil its latest earnings on Wednesday, February 1, 2012. AOL is a global web services company whose business consists of online content, products, and services that it offers to consumers, publishers, and advertisers.

AOL Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for profit of 17 cents per share, a decline of 73.8% 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 15 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved up. It has been unchanged at 17 cents during the last month. Analysts are projecting profit to rise by 98.3% versus last year to 6 cents.

Past Earnings Performance: Last quarter, the company saw a loss of 7 cents per share versus a mean estimate of net loss of 7 cents per share. This comes after two consecutive quarters of exceeding expectations.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: Analysts are projecting a decline of 3.8% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $573.1 million.

Analyst Ratings: Analysts are bullish on AOL as five analysts rate it as a buy, one rates it as a sell and five rate it as a hold.

A Look Back: In the third quarter, the company swung to a loss of $2.6 million (2 cents a share) from a profit of $171.6 million ($1.60) a year earlier, meeting analyst expectations. Revenue fell 5.6% to $531.7 million from $563.5 million.

Key Stats:

Revenue has fallen in the past four quarters. Revenue declined 7.2% in the second quarter from the year earlier, dropped 17% in first quarter from the year-ago quarter and 24.2% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year.

Competitors to Watch: Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG), Yahoo! Inc. (NASDAQ:YHOO), Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT), IAC/InterActiveCorp (NASDAQ:IACI), Demand Media Inc (NYSE:DMD), News Corporation (NASDAQ:NWSA), The New York Times Company (NYSE:NYT), CBS Corporation (NYSE:CBS), and Baidu.com, Inc. (NASDAQ:BIDU).

Stock Price Performance: During November 28, 2011 to January 26, 2012, the stock price had risen $1.93 (14%) from $13.79 to $15.72. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between August 22, 2011 and August 31, 2011 when shares rose for eight-straight days, rising 27.5% (+$3.36) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between July 22, 2011 and August 2, 2011 when shares fell for eight-straight days, falling 15.9% (-$3.08) over that span.

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

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