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What's in Store for CenterPoint Energy (CNP) in Q4 Earnings?

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CenterPoint Energy CorpCNP will release fourth-quarter 2017 results before the market opens on Feb 22.

Last quarter, the company reported a negative earnings surprise of 4.88%. However, CenterPoint Energy outperformed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in two of the trailing four quarters with an average beat of 6.42%.

Let's see how things are shaping up for the company prior to this announcement.

Factors at Play

CenterPoint Energy witnessed increased customer count during third-quarter 2017, primarily driven by the acquisition of Atmos Energy Marketing (AEM). The AEM acquisition has been accretive to the company's results as of Sep 30, 2017, which in turn bolstered its Energy Services segment's growth. We expect the company's fourth-quarter results to also benefit from the same.

Per management, customer growth, rate relief, energy services and midstream segments are likely to drive CenterPoint Energy's fourth-quarter performance.

Major regions of CenterPoint Energy's service territory witnessed warmer-than-normal winter during the fourth quarter. This led to lower expenditure for consumers which are likely to dent the company's sales in the to-be-reported quarter.

Notably, the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 30 cents for fourth-quarter earnings marks a 15.4% increase year over year, while revenue estimate of $2.15 billion hints at an improvement of almost 3.4%.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not show that CenterPoint Energy is likely to beat on earnings this quarter. This is 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. This is not the case here, as you will see below.

Zacks ESP : CenterPoint Energy has an Earnings ESP of -7.29%. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they're reported with our Earnings ESP Filter .

Zacks Rank : CenterPoint Energy carries a Zacks Rank #2, which increases the predictive power of ESP. However, the company's negative Earnings ESP makes surprise prediction difficult.

Conversely, we caution against Sell-rated stocks (#4 or 5) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the company is seeing negative estimate revisions.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Price and EPS Surprise | CenterPoint Energy, Inc. Quote

Stocks to Consider

Here are a few operators in the utility space that you may consider, as our model shows that these have the right combination of elements to deliver an earnings beat this quarter:

Edison International EIX has an Earnings ESP of +1.44% and a Zacks Rank #3. The company is scheduled to report next quarterly results on Feb 22. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .

Public Service Enterprise PEG has an Earnings ESP of +1.92% and a Zacks Rank #3. The company is scheduled to report next quarterly results on Feb 23.

Pinnacle West Capital PNW has an Earnings ESP of +12.20% and a Zacks Rank #3. The company is scheduled to report next quarterly results on Feb 23.

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CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (CNP): 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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