Assurant Inc. Fourth Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Assurant Inc. (NYSE:AIZ) will unveil its latest earnings on Wednesday, February 1, 2012. Assurant provides specialized insurance products and related services in North America and some international markets.

Assurant Inc. Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for profit of $1.37 per share, a rise of 26.9% 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 $1.35. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has risen from $1.34 during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting net income of $4.28 per share, a decline of 14.7% from last year.

Past Earnings Performance: The company topped estimates last quarter after missing forecasts the quarter prior. In the third quarter, it reported profit of 79 cents per share against a mean estimate of net income of 77 cents per share. In the second quarter, it missed forecasts by 12 cents.

Investing Insights: Will the iPad 3 Be the Next Catalyst for Apple’s Stock?

Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $2.07 billion in revenue this quarter, a decline of 1.9% from the year ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $8.23 billion for the year, a decline of 3.5% from last year’s revenue of $8.53 billion.

Analyst Ratings: Analysts seem relatively indifferent about Assurant with six of 11 analysts surveyed maintaining a hold rating.

A Look Back: In the third quarter, profit fell 46.4% to $76 million (79 cents a share) from $141.7 million ($1.30 a share) the year earlier, but exceeded analyst expectations. Revenue fell 2.5% to $2.06 billion from $2.11 billion.

Key Stats:

Revenue has fallen in the past four quarters. Revenue declined 3.6% in the second quarter from the year earlier, dropped 6.1% in first quarter from the year-ago quarter and 3.5% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year.

Competitors to Watch: Hartford Financial Services (NYSE:HIG), American Financial Group (NYSE:AFG), HCC Insurance Hldgs., Inc. (NYSE:HCC), Hilltop Holdings Inc. (NYSE:HTH), The Allstate Corporation (NYSE:ALL), Old Republic Intl. Corp. (NYSE:ORI), American Intl. Group, Inc. (NYSE:AIG), The Travelers Companies, Inc. (NYSE:TRV), CNA Financial Corporation (NYSE:CNA), and The Chubb Corporation (NYSE:CB).

Stock Price Performance: During November 28, 2011 to January 26, 2012, the stock price had risen $2.67 (7.2%) from $37.15 to $39.82. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between January 11, 2012 and January 20, 2012 when shares rose for seven-straight days, rising 3.4% (+$1.30) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between May 27, 2011 and June 8, 2011 when shares fell for eight-straight days, falling 6% (-$2.20) over that span.

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

Investing Insights: Will the iPad 3 Be the Next Catalyst for Apple’s Stock?