Ball Corp Fourth Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Ball Corp (NYSE:BLL) will unveil its latest earnings on Thursday, January 26, 2012. Ball Corporation supplies metal and plastic packaging to the household products, food and beverage industries as well as aerospace and other technologies and services to governmental and commercial customers.

Ball Corp Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet.

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for net income of 53 cents per share, a rise of 12.8% 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 54 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has been unchanged at 53 cents during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting profit of $2.78 per share, a rise of 18.8% from last year.

Last quarter, the company came in at net income of 81 cents per share against a mean estimate of profit of 78 cents per share, beating estimates after missing them in the previous quarter. In the second quarter, it missed forecasts by one cent.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: Analysts are projecting a rise of 3.5% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $2.07 billion.

Analyst Ratings: Analysts are bullish on this stock with six analysts rating it as a buy, none rating it as a sell and none rating it as a hold.

A Look Back: In the third quarter, profit fell 41.9% to $132.1 million (79 cents a share) from $227.5 million ($1.25 a share) the year earlier, but exceeded analyst expectations. Revenue rose 11% to $2.26 billion from $2.04 billion.

Key Stats:

The decrease in profit in the third quarter broke a streak of three consecutive quarters of year-over-year profit increases. Net income rose more than twofold in the second quarter, 15.1% in the first quarter and 13.3% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year.

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue rose 15.1% in the second quarter from the year earlier, climbed 17.9% in the first quarter from the year-ago quarter and 7% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year.

Competitors to Watch: Crown Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:CCK), Silgan Holdings Inc. (NASDAQ:SLGN), Bway Holding Company (BWY), and Dominguez y Cia., S.A. (NYSE:DOM).

Stock Price Performance: During November 21, 2011 to January 20, 2012, the stock price had risen $4.44 (13.3%) from $33.47 to $37.91. It saw one of its worst periods between November 11, 2011 and November 23, 2011 when shares fell for nine-straight days, falling 6.7% (-$2.36) over that span. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between June 24, 2011 and July 8, 2011 when shares rose for 10-straight days, rising 7.7% (+$2.87) over that span.

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

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