The McGraw-Hill Companies Inc. Fourth Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

S&P 500 (NYSE:SPY) component The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. (NYSE:MHP) will unveil its latest earnings on Tuesday, January 31, 2012. McGraw-Hill produces a range of information products and services for the education, financial services, and business information markets.

The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for net income of 57 cents per share, a rise of 3.6% from the company’s actual earnings for the same quarter a year ago. The average estimate is the same as three months ago. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate was unchanged. It also has not changed during the last month. For the year, analysts are projecting profit of $2.85 per share, a rise of 5.9% from last year.

Past Earnings Performance: Last quarter, the company missed estimates by 2 cents, coming in at net income of $1.21 per share versus a mean estimate of profit of $1.23 per share. In the second quarter, the company beat estimates by one cent.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: On average, analysts predict $1.55 billion in revenue this quarter, a rise of 2% from the year ago quarter. Analysts are forecasting total revenue of $6.29 billion for the year, a rise of 1.9% from last year’s revenue of $6.17 billion.

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

A Look Back: In the third quarter, profit fell 3.8% to $365.6 million ($1.21 a share) from $379.9 million ($1.23 a share) the year earlier, missing analyst expectations. Revenue fell 3.6% to $1.91 billion from $1.98 billion.

Key Stats:

A year-over-year revenue decrease in the third quarter snapped a streak of three consecutive quarters of revenue increases. Revenue rose 7.2%in the second quarter, 7.7% in the first quarter and 4.2% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year.

The decrease in profit in the third quarter broke a streak of two consecutive quarters of year-over-year profit increases. Net income rose 10.5% in the second quarter and 16.2% in the first quarter.

Competitors to Watch: Reed Elsevier plc (NYSE:RUK), Thomson Reuters Corp. (NYSE:TRI), Reed Elsevier NV (NYSE:ENL), Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE:GCI), Meredith Corporation (NYSE:MDP), Scholastic Corporation (NASDAQ:SCHL), Pearson PLC (NYSE:PSO), News Corporation (NASDAQ:NWSA), and The New York Times Company (NYSE:NYT).

Stock Price Performance: During November 25, 2011 to January 25, 2012, the stock price had risen $6.85 (16.9%) from $40.54 to $47.39. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between September 9, 2011 and September 19, 2011 when shares rose for seven-straight days, rising 17.4% (+$6.68) over that span. It saw one of its worst periods between August 29, 2011 and September 6, 2011 when shares fell for six-straight days, falling 5.3% (-$2.21) over that span.

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

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To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com