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Can Macy's (M) Keep Its Earnings Streak Alive in Q1?

Macy's, Inc. M, one of the leading department store retailers, is slated to report first-quarter fiscal 2016 results on May 11. The big question facing investors now is, whether the company will be able to deliver a positive earnings surprise in the quarter to be reported. In the preceding two quarters, Macy's outperformed the Zacks Consensus Estimate. Let’s see how things are shaping up for this announcement.

Zacks Model Shows Unlikely Earnings Beat

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Macy's is likely to beat earnings estimates this quarter. This is because a stock needs to have both a positive Earnings ESP and a Zacks Rank #1, 2 or 3 for this to happen. Macy's has an Earnings ESP of -13.89% as the Most Accurate estimate stands at 31 cents, while the Zacks Consensus Estimate is pegged at 36 cents. Macy's Zacks Rank #3 (Hold) increases the predictive power of ESP. However, we need to have a positive ESP to be confident about an earnings surprise.

Factors Influencing this Quarter

Macy’s operates in the highly competitive retail merchandise sector. Moreover, aggressive pricing to fend off competition may weigh on margins in the quarter to be reported. Also, Macy’s dwindling top- and bottom-line results remain the primary concern for investors.

A look at the company’s performance in fiscal 2015 unveils that net sales declined 0.7%, 2.6%, 5.2% and 5.3% in the first, second, third and fourth quarters, respectively. Maintaining the same chronological order, we note that earnings per share fell 6.7%, 20%, 8.2% and 14.3%, respectively. A mature domestic market, lower tourist spending and cautious consumer spending continue to pose concerns.

Nevertheless, Macy’s has undertaken extensive restructuring activities – Macy’s Backstage off-price business, new loyalty rewards program and expansion of Bluemercury – in an attempt to augment sales, profitability and cash flows.

Stocks Poised to Beat Earnings Estimates

Here are some companies you may want to consider as our model shows that these have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat:

The TJX Companies, Inc. TJX has an Earnings ESP of +1.43% and a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

The Wendy's Company WEN has an Earnings ESP of +16.67% and a Zacks Rank #2.

Hormel Foods Corporation HRL has an Earnings ESP of +5.26% and a Zacks Rank #3.

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HORMEL FOODS CP (HRL): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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MACYS INC (M): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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