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Food Stocks to Report Q1 Earnings on May 2: MDLZ, ADM, FDP

The first-quarter earnings season has so far seen financial results from 40.6% of the consumer staples companies in the S&P 500 cohort. According to the latest Earnings Preview , 76.9% of the companies surpassed earnings and 23.1% beat revenue expectations.

Total earnings at these consumer staples companies increased 1.5% while revenues declined 3.3%. The sector is expected to report 4.3% earnings growth and 4% revenue growth in the first quarter of 2017.

Some of the key players in the sector - Procter & Gamble CompanyPG and The Hershey CompanyHSY - have already released their quarterly numbers. Procter & Gamble reported third-quarter fiscal 2017 results, wherein earnings exceeded expectations, while revenues missed the same. On the other hand, Hershey's first-quarter 2017 earnings beat the Zacks Consensus Estimate, while sales missed the same.

The food industry within the consumer staples sector saw sluggish growth and slowdown in consumption in the last few quarters. The industry is experiencing changes in consumer preference (for example, a shift toward products with less artificial sweeteners, sodium and saturated fat), changes in consumer dynamics (such as increased need for portable and on-the-go products), demographic shifts and also a shift in demand for low-priced products.

Against this backdrop, let's try to determine how these players - Mondelez International, Inc. MDLZ , Archer-Daniels-Midland Company ADM and Fresh Del Monte Produce, Inc. FDP - are placed ahead of their earnings release on May 2.

Mondelez International, Inc. , which is slated to report first-quarter 2017 results, delivered a negative earnings surprise of 4.08% last quarter. In the three quarters prior to that, the Oreo-maker came up with positive earnings surprises, with the four-quarter average beat being 11.71%.

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Mondelez is likely to beat earnings estimates this quarter because a stock needs to have both a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) for this to happen. You may uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they're reported with our Earnings ESP Filter .

Mondelez has an Earnings ESP of -2%. This is because the Most Accurate estimate of 49 cents stands below the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 50 cents. This leaves our prediction inconclusive even though the company carries a favorable Zacks Rank #3. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .

Mondelez's volumes have been hurt since 2014 mainly due to soft consumer demand. The company has been struggling due to shifting consumer's preference toward natural and organic ingredients over packaged and processed food.

Macroeconomic headwinds in the Middle East and Brazil, the post-demonetization impact in India, and adverse currency fluctuations could further restrict sales growth in the to-be-reported quarter. Foreign exchange is a major headwind for Mondelez with about 75% of its revenues coming from outside the U.S. We expect these headwinds to continue in the to-be-reported quarter.

Nonetheless, Mondelez has been focusing on expanding margins through cost savings and productivity improvement. These initiatives are paying off and could boost the company's margins and thereby its bottom line in the first quarter (read more: Mondelez Q1 Earnings: Disappointment in the Cards? ).

Mondelez International, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Mondelez International, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise | Mondelez International, Inc. Quote

Archer-Daniels-Midland Company, a leading food processing company, is slated to report first-quarter 2017 results. Last quarter, the company posted a negative earnings surprise of 6.25%. The company has a dismal earnings surprise history, missing estimates in three of the last four quarters. However, the company delivered a positive earnings surprise of 25.5% in the third quarter that outweighed all the other three negative surprises and has a positive average surprise of 2.53%.

Our proven model shows that Archer-Daniels-Midland may beat earnings because it has the right combination of the two key components. Currently, the company has a Zacks Rank #3 and an Earnings ESP of +1.64% as the Most Accurate estimate of 62 cents is higher than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 61 cents.

Further, the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 61 cents per share for the first quarter reflects growth of 45.6% from the year-ago quarter. Also, analysts polled by Zacks expect revenues of $15.3 billion for the quarter, representing a 6.3% upside from the prior-year quarter (read more: Is an Earnings Beat in Store for Archer Daniels in Q1? ).

Archer-Daniels-Midland Company Price and EPS Surprise

Archer-Daniels-Midland Company Price and EPS Surprise | Archer-Daniels-Midland Company Quote

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. , a world leader in the production, distribution and marketing of fresh produce, is slated to report its first-quarter 2017 results before the opening bell.

Last quarter, the company delivered a positive earnings surprise of 420%. The company surpassed estimates in all of the past four quarters and has an average positive surprise of 166.74%.

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Fresh Del Monte is likely to beat earnings this quarter. Fresh Del Monte has an Earnings ESP of 0.00%. This is because both the Most Accurate estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate are currently pegged at $1.17. However, the company carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). We caution against stocks with a Zacks Rank #4 or 5 (Sell rated) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the company is witnessing negative estimate revisions.

For the first quarter, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for earnings is pegged at $1.77, reflecting a 25.5% year-over-year decrease. Meanwhile, our estimate for revenues is pegged at $1.05 billion, implying a 3.1% increase.

Fresh Del Monte Produce, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

Fresh Del Monte Produce, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise | Fresh Del Monte Produce, Inc. Quote

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Fresh Del Monte Produce, Inc. (FDP): Free Stock Analysis Report

Hershey Company (The) (HSY): Free Stock Analysis Report

Mondelez International, Inc. (MDLZ): Free Stock Analysis Report

Procter & Gamble Company (The) (PG): Free Stock Analysis Report

Archer-Daniels-Midland Company (ADM): Free Stock Analysis Report

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


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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