Noble Energy, Inc. Third Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Noble Energy, Inc. (NYSE:NBL) will unveil its latest earnings on Thursday, October 20, 2011. Noble Energy is an independent energy company that acquires and produces crude oil (NYSE:USO), natural gas (NYSE:UNG), and natural gas liquids.

Noble Energy, Inc. Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for net income of $1.04 per share, a decline of 18.1% 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 $1.28. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has risen from $1.02 during the last month. Analysts are projecting profit to rise by 15.2% versus last year to $4.86.

Past Earnings Performance: The company has beaten estimates the last four quarters and is coming off a quarter where it topped forecasts by 11 cents, reporting profit of $1.44 per share against a mean estimate of net income of $1.33 per share.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: Analysts are projecting a rise of 22.8% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $927 million.

Analyst Ratings: Analysts are bullish on this stock with 12 analysts rating it as a buy, none rating it as a sell and six rating it as a hold.

A Look Back: In the second quarter, profit rose 44.1% to $294 million ($1.61 a share) from $204 million ($1.10 a share) the year earlier, exceeding analyst expectations. Revenue rose 31.2% to $954 million from $727 million.

Key Stats:

Revenue has risen the past four quarters. Revenue rose 27.2% in the first quarter from the year earlier, climbed 3% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year from the year-ago quarter and 21% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year.

The company has now been profitable for the last eight quarters, and for the last four, profit has risen year over year by an average of more than twofold. The quarter with the biggest boost was the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year, which saw a more than sixfold surge.

Competitors to Watch: Marathon Oil Corporation (NYSE:MRO), Anadarko Petroleum Corp. (NYSE:APC), EOG Resources, Inc. (NYSE:EOG), Newfield Exploration Co. (NYSE:NFX), Chevron Corporation (NYSE:CVX), Apache Corporation (NYSE:APA), Harvest Natural Resources, Inc. (NYSE:HNR), Murphy Oil Corporation (NYSE:MUR), Crimson Exploration Inc. (NASDAQ:CXPO), and ATP Oil & Gas Corporation (NASDAQ:ATPG).

Stock Price Performance: During July 21, 2011 to October 14, 2011, the stock price had fallen $13.01 (-13.5%) from $96.65 to $83.64. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between June 24, 2011 and July 5, 2011 when shares rose for seven-straight days, rising 7% (+$5.97) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between December 29, 2010 and January 6, 2011 when shares fell for seven-straight days, falling 5.2% (-$4.50) over that span. Shares are down $1.90 (-2.2%) year to date.

(Source: Xignite Financials)

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