Zale Third Quarter Earnings Sneak Peek

Zale Corp (NYSE:ZLC) will unveil its latest earnings on Wednesday, May 23, 2012. Zale is a specialty retailer of fine jewelry. It operates specialty retail jewelry stores and kiosks located mainly in shopping malls throughout the United States, Canada and Puerto Rico.

Zale Corp Earnings Preview Cheat Sheet

Wall St. Earnings Expectations: The average estimate of analysts is for net loss of 16 cents per share, a narrower loss from the year-earlier quarter net loss of 31 cents. During the past three months, the average estimate has moved up from a loss of 18 cents. Between one and three months ago, the average estimate moved up. It has been unchanged at a loss of 16 cents during the last month.

Past Earnings Performance: Last quarter, the company beat estimates by one cent, coming in at profit of 78 cents a share versus the estimate of net income of 77 cents a share. It marked the fourth straight quarter of beating estimates.

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Wall St. Revenue Expectations: Analysts are projecting a rise of 5.4% in revenue from the year-earlier quarter to $433.9 million.

Analyst Ratings: The limited number of analysts covering the stock seem relatively indifferent about Zale with two of three analysts surveyed maintaining a hold rating.

A Look Back: In the second quarter, profit rose 6% to $28.8 million (77 cents a share) from $27.2 million (73 cents a share) the year earlier, exceeding analyst expectations. Revenue rose 6% to $663.8 million from $626.4 million.

Key Stats:

On the top line, the company is looking to build on four-straight revenue increases heading into this earnings announcement. Revenue rose 14.5% in the third quarter of the last fiscal year, 9.4% in the fourth quarter of the last fiscal year and 7.3% in the first quarter before increasing again in the second quarter.

The upcoming earnings announcement is a chance for the company to build on positive results from last quarter. After taking losses in the third quarter of the last fiscal year, the fourth of the last fiscal year and the first quarter, the company finished in the black with income of $28.8 million in the second.

Stock Price Performance: Between February 22, 2012 and May 17, 2012, the stock price fell $1.26 (-36.3%), from $3.47 to $2.21. The stock price saw one of its best stretches over the last year between March 12, 2012 and March 20, 2012, when shares rose for seven straight days, increasing 12.4% (+38 cents) 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, dropping 19.7% (-94 cents) over that span.

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

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