International Paper Fourth Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component International Paper (NYSE:IP) will unveil its latest earnings tomorrow, Tuesday, January 29, 2013. International Paper is a global paper and packaging company with operations in North America, Europe, Latin America, Russia, Asia and North Africa.

International Paper Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for profit of 64 cents per share, a decline of 3% 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 75 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has risen from 63 cents during the last month. Analysts are projecting profit to rise by 21.3% versus last year to $2.44.

Past Earnings Performance: Last quarter, the company missed estimates by 2 cents, coming in at net income of 75 cents per share against an estimate of profit of. In the second quarter, the company also missed expectations.

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A Look Back: In the third quarter, profit fell 54.2% to $237 million (54 cents a share) from $518 million ($1.19 a share) the year earlier, missing analyst expectations. Revenue rose 5.9% to $7.03 billion from $6.63 billion.

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

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Stock Price Performance: Between October 25, 2012 and January 23, 2013, the stock price rose $6.99 (19.8%), from $35.26 to $42.25. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between December 6, 2012 and December 18, 2012, when shares rose for nine straight days, increasing 8.3% (+$2.97) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between May 1, 2012 and May 10, 2012 when shares fell for eight straight days, dropping 6.5% (-$2.16) over that span.

Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $6.97 billion in revenue this quarter, a rise of 9.4% from the year-ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $27.77 billion for the year, a rise of 6.7% from last year’s revenue of $26.03 billion.

Key Stats:

On the top line, the company is looking to build on three-straight revenue increases heading into this earnings announcement. Revenue increased 4.2% in the first quarter and 6.5% in the second quarter before climbing again in the third quarter.

Heading into this earnings announcement, net income has dropped 39.5% on average for the last four quarters.

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

Balance Sheet Analysis: The company’s current ratio of assets to liabilities came in at 1.8 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)