The Hartford Financial Services Group, Inc.
) is set to report first-quarter 2014 results on April 28, 2014.
Last quarter, it posted a 4.44% surprise. Let's see how things
are shaping up for this announcement.
Factors This Past Quarter
Hartford Financial has taken a number of steps in the last
quarter to improve operational efficiency and strengthen its
business. The divestiture of its U.K. Variable Annuity Business
on the last day of 2013 is one of the many measures adopted by
Hartford Financial to reduce risks in its Talcott Resolution
However, the guidance for 2014-15 (reduction of core earnings
by 20%) makes us skeptical about the prospects of this segment.
Toward improving its customer service, Hartford Financial
launched a training program for new agency professionals in the
beginning of the quarter. This was aimed at addressing the unique
requirements of small business owners and capitalizing on the
vast opportunity provided by this section of the market.
Further, Hartford Financial has been adept in the use of
technology to improve operational efficiency. Recently, it
collaborated with IT giant,
), to use the cloud-based infrastructure on the latter's PureFlex
System to enhance its operations and thereby competitiveness.
Our proven model does not conclusively show that Hartford
Financial is likely to beat earnings this quarter. That is
because a stock needs to have both a positive
(Expected Surprise Prediction) and a Zacks Rank of #1, 2 or 3 for
this to happen. That is not the case here as you will see
Negative Zacks ESP:
That is because the Most Accurate estimate stands at 92
cents per share while the Zacks Consensus Estimate is pegged at
93 cents, making the difference -1.08%.
Zacks Rank #3 (Hold):
Hartford Financial's Zacks Rank #3 increases the predictive power
of ESP, but when combined with a negative ESP, it makes surprise
We caution against stocks with Zacks Rank #4 and 5 (Sell-rated
stocks) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the
company is seeing zero or negative estimate revisions
Other Stocks to Consider
Here are some other companies you may want to consider as our
model shows they have the right combination of elements to post
an earnings beat this quarter:
Radian Group Inc.
) with Earnings ESP of +5.00% and Zacks Rank #3.
American International Group Inc.
) with Earnings ESP of +0.94% and Zacks Rank #3.
AMER INTL GRP (AIG): Free Stock Analysis
HARTFORD FIN SV (HIG): Free Stock Analysis
INTL BUS MACH (IBM): Free Stock Analysis
RADIAN GRP INC (RDN): Free Stock Analysis
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