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Zacks.com featured expert Kevin Matras highlights: Exact Sciences Corp., Modine Manufacturing, Barnes Group, Owens Corning and Health Insurance Innovations

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL - October 25, 2017 - Stocks in this week's article include: Exact Sciences Corp.EXAS , Modine ManufacturingMOD , Barnes GroupB , Owens CorningOC and Health Insurance InnovationsHIIQ . Kevin Matras screens for companies showing their 'first' profit, and explains why they are ones to watch.

Screen of the Week written by Kevin Matras of Zacks Investment Research:

Get Ready to Be Surprised This Earnings Season

With earnings season in full swing, this is a good screen to use both before and after a company reports.

Like any earnings season, we're going to see both positive surprises and negative surprises.

This screen however focuses on more than just earnings surprises, but instead goes over the importance of both earnings surprises and sales surprises, and why as an investor you should care so much about them.

As you know, if a company reports earnings above expectations, that's a positive surprise, and the price in general should go up.

If the company reports earnings below expectations, that's a negative surprise, and the price in general should go down.

But a surprise is more than just a snapshot of an extra few dollars and cents a company made or lost in that one period. Instead, it's a glimpse into what a company's earnings could be, or should be, in the future.

And when these surprises occur, the market tries to quickly re-price that stock to reflect these changes.

Not All Surprises Are Created Equal

Some earnings surprises are due to revenue increases, and other earnings surprises are due to cost cutting measures.

Top line growth (or sales growth) usually produces the biggest price reaction over cost-cutting, because an increase in sales is generally thought of as more sustainable. Once you've cut costs, where's the future growth going to come from? You can only cut costs so much. You need sales to drive long term growth.

There's also guidance. What the company sees down the road is important.

If you've got a positive surprise on one hand, but then downward guidance on the other, that'll usually produce a negative reaction. Why? Because they've taken away the hope generated from the surprise by saying the future outlook will likely be weaker than expected.

There's also the idea that some surprises aren't really surprises -- either because a company has a history of continuously beating their estimates or the stock has already priced in a 'surprise' by running up or going down prior to the announcement; therefore, the 'surprise' in that direction really wasn't a surprise at all. That's where you'll sometimes see an opposite reaction to an earnings surprise - a "buy the rumor sell the fact" type event.

But while predicting which companies will surprise or not can be difficult, the benefit of an earnings surprise will typically last for one to three months after a surprise is reported.

So you can get in after a company reports a surprise, or you can try and find companies that are more likely to report a surprise, and get in ahead of time.

For the rest of this Screen of the Week article please visit Zacks.com at:https://www.zacks.com/commentary/133559/get-ready-to-be-surprised-this-earnings-season

Disclosure: Officers, directors and/or employees of Zacks Investment Research may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material. An affiliated investment advisory firm may own or have sold short securities and/or hold long and/or short positions in options that are mentioned in this material.

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Modine Manufacturing Company (MOD): Free Stock Analysis Report

Owens Corning Inc (OC): Free Stock Analysis Report

Health Insurance Innovations, Inc. (HIIQ): Free Stock Analysis Report

Barnes Group, Inc. (B): Free Stock Analysis Report

Exact Sciences Corporation (EXAS): Free Stock Analysis Report

To read this article on Zacks.com click here.

Zacks Investment Research

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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