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BIG

Big Lots, Inc. (NYSE:BIG) Released Earnings Last Week And Analysts Lifted Their Price Target To US$61.22

Investors in Big Lots, Inc. (NYSE:BIG) had a good week, as its shares rose 6.1% to close at US$66.29 following the release of its annual results. It was a credible result overall, with revenues of US$6.2b and statutory earnings per share of US$16.11 both in line with analyst estimates, showing that Big Lots is executing in line with expectations. Earnings are an important time for investors, as they can track a company's performance, look at what the analysts are forecasting for next year, and see if there's been a change in sentiment towards the company. We thought readers would find it interesting to see the analysts latest (statutory) post-earnings forecasts for next year. earnings-and-revenue-growthNYSE:BIG Earnings and Revenue Growth March 9th 2021

Following the recent earnings report, the consensus from eight analysts covering Big Lots is for revenues of US$5.83b in 2022, implying a discernible 6.0% decline in sales compared to the last 12 months. Statutory earnings per share are forecast to tumble 64% to US$5.86 in the same period. Before this earnings report, the analysts had been forecasting revenues of US$5.76b and earnings per share (EPS) of US$6.10 in 2022. So it looks like there's been a small decline in overall sentiment after the recent results - there's been no major change to revenue estimates, but the analysts did make a minor downgrade to their earnings per share forecasts.

Althoughthe analysts have revised their earnings forecasts for next year, they've also lifted the consensus price target 8.0% to US$61.22, suggesting the revised estimates are not indicative of a weaker long-term future for the business. That's not the only conclusion we can draw from this data however, as some investors also like to consider the spread in estimates when evaluating analyst price targets. Currently, the most bullish analyst values Big Lots at US$72.00 per share, while the most bearish prices it at US$44.00. These price targets show that analysts do have some differing views on the business, but the estimates do not vary enough to suggest to us that some are betting on wild success or utter failure.

One way to get more context on these forecasts is to look at how they compare to both past performance, and how other companies in the same industry are performing. These estimates imply that sales are expected to slow, with a forecast annualised revenue decline of 6.0% by the end of 2022. This indicates a significant reduction from annual growth of 2.6% over the last five years. By contrast, our data suggests that other companies (with analyst coverage) in the same industry are forecast to see their revenue grow 4.7% annually for the foreseeable future. So although its revenues are forecast to shrink, this cloud does not come with a silver lining - Big Lots is expected to lag the wider industry.

The Bottom Line

The most important thing to take away is that the analysts downgraded their earnings per share estimates, showing that there has been a clear decline in sentiment following these results. On the plus side, there were no major changes to revenue estimates; although forecasts imply revenues will perform worse than the wider industry. There was also a nice increase in the price target, with the analysts clearly feeling that the intrinsic value of the business is improving.

With that said, the long-term trajectory of the company's earnings is a lot more important than next year. We have estimates - from multiple Big Lots analysts - going out to 2024, and you can see them free on our platform here.

That said, it's still necessary to consider the ever-present spectre of investment risk. We've identified 4 warning signs with Big Lots (at least 2 which are potentially serious) , and understanding these should be part of your investment process.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team (at) simplywallst.com.

The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

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