Xcel Energy Inc.XEL will release fourth-quarter 2016 financial results before the market opens on Feb 2. Last quarter, this electric and natural gas utility's earnings recorded a positive earnings surprise of 3.45%.
Let's see how things are shaping up at the company prior to this announcement.
Factors to Consider
Above-average temperatures in its service territories in the fourth quarter are expected to hit Xcel Energy's top line.
However, lower unemployment rates than the national average in the company's service territories indicate improving economic fundamentals in these states, which will in turn add to Xcel Energy's revenues.
Our proven model does not conclusively show that Xcel Energy is likely to beat earnings estimates this quarter. That 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. Unfortunately, that is not the case here, as you will see below.
Zacks ESP: The company has an Earnings ESP of 0.00% because both the Most Accurate estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate are pegged at 44 cents.
You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they're reported with our Earnings ESP Filter .
Xcel Energy Inc. Price and EPS Surprise
Zacks Rank: Though Xcel Energy's Zacks Rank #2 increases the predictive power of ESP, its 0.00% ESP makes surprise prediction difficult.
Note that we caution against stocks with a Zacks Rank #4 or 5 (Sell-rated stocks) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the company is seeing negative estimate revisions.
Stocks to Consider
Here are a few stocks in the utility space worth considering as our model shows that they have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat this quarter:
Portland General Electric Company POR is slated to report earnings on Feb 17. It is has an Earnings ESP of +1.56% and a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today's Zacks #1 Rank stocks here .
Exelon Corporation EXC has an Earnings ESP of +2.27% and a Zacks Rank #2. It is expected to release its quarterly numbers on Feb 8.
Pinnacle West Capital Corporation PNW has an Earnings ESP of +4.08% and a Zacks Rank #2. It is slated to report earnings on Feb 24.
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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.