Southern Co Second Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component Southern Co (NYSE:SO) will unveil its latest earnings on Wednesday, July 25, 2012. Southern Company, through its operating companies, provides electric service in four Southeastern states.

Southern Co Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average analyst estimate is for net income of 68 cents per share, a decline of 4.2% from the company’s actual earnings for the year-ago quarter. During the past three months, the average estimate has moved down from 74 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved down. It has been unchanged at 68 cents during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting profit of $2.65 per share, a rise of 3.1% from last year.

Past Earnings Performance: The company missed estimates last quarter after beating forecasts in the prior two. In the first quarter, the company reported net income of 42 cents per share versus a mean estimate of profit of 46 cents per share. In the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year, the company beat estimates by one cent.

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A Look Back: In the first quarter, profit fell 12.3% to $384 million (42 cents a share) from $438 million (49 cents a share) the year earlier, missing analyst expectations. Revenue fell 10.2% to $3.6 billion from $4.01 billion.

Wall St. Revenue Expectations: Analysts are projecting a rise of 5.5% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $4.77 billion.

Stock Price Performance: Between May 22, 2012 and July 19, 2012, the stock price had risen $2.15 (4.7%), from $45.55 to $47.70. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between May 30, 2012 and June 8, 2012, when shares rose for eight straight days, increasing 3.3% (+$1.53) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between July 21, 2011 and July 29, 2011 when shares fell for seven straight days, dropping 3.1% (-$1.26) over that span.

Key Stats:

The company is looking to get back on track with this earnings announcement after a profit drop last quarter snapped a positive string of results. Net income rose 17.8% in the second quarter of the last fiscal year, 11.9% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year and 63.4% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year before declining in the first 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 2% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year and dropped again in the first quarter.

Analyst Ratings: There are mostly holds on the stock with 13 of 16 analysts surveyed giving that rating.

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

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