Praxair Fourth Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Praxair (NYSE:PX) will unveil its latest earnings tomorrow, Wednesday, January 23, 2013. Praxair produces and sells atmospheric, process and specialty gases, and high-performance surface coatings to industrial clients.

Praxair Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for net income of $1.38 per share, a rise of 1.5% 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 $1.44. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has been unchanged at $1.38 during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting profit of $5.57 per share, a rise of 2.6% from last year.

Past Earnings Performance: Last quarter, the company saw net income of $1.39 per share versus a mean estimate of profit of $1.39 per share. This comes after two consecutive quarters of exceeding expectations.

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Stock Price Performance: Between November 16, 2012 and January 16, 2013, the stock price had risen $8.27 (7.9%), from $104.30 to $112.57. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between December 3, 2012 and December 11, 2012, when shares rose for seven straight days, increasing 2.5% (+$2.61) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between May 7, 2012 and May 18, 2012 when shares fell for 10 straight days, dropping 8.4% (-$9.62) over that span.

Analyst Ratings: With 10 analysts rating the stock a buy, one rating it a sell and four 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 1.12 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.

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

PX

Key Stats:

This upcoming earnings announcement will be a chance to build on positive earnings momentum over the last three quarters. Net income rose 5.3% in the first quarter and 0.9% in the second quarter before increasing again in the third quarter.

On the top line, the company is hoping to use this earnings announcement to snap a string of two-straight quarters of revenue declines. Revenue fell 1.6% in the second quarter and dropped again in the third quarter.

Wall St. Revenue Expectations: Analysts are projecting a decline of 0.7% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $2.78 billion.

A Look Back: In the third quarter, profit rose 0.2% to $430 million ($1.43 a share) from $429 million ($1.40 a share) the year earlier, meeting analyst expectations. Revenue fell 4.2% to $2.77 billion from $2.9 billion.

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