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Will Dean Foods (DF) Q1 Earnings Ruin its Positive Trend?

Dean Foods Company DF is slated to report first-quarter fiscal 2016 results on May 10. Last quarter, the company had delivered a positive earnings surprise of 5.9%. In fact, the company has outperformed the Zacks Consensus Estimate by an average of 23.5% over the past four quarters. Let’s see how things are shaping up for this announcement.



Factors Influencing this Quarter

Though Dean Food’s earnings topped estimates in the preceding quarter, sales remained soft and lagged expectations for the fifth straight quarter, mainly on account of a decline in volumes. Further, the company expects the first quarter to witness a low single-digit dip in volumes, thus posing a concern. Apart from this, Dean Foods’ heavy dependence on commodities such as raw milk, soybeans, diesel fuel and others, greatly exposes it to price fluctuations. Hence, any volatility in raw material prices can impact margins and thereby hurt results.

Given these factors, let’s wait and see whether Dean Foods’ strategic initiatives focused on improving core business activities and creating a balance between pricing and volumes, can help it counter these headwinds in the quarter to be reported.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Dean Foods is likely to beat earnings 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. This is not the case here, as you will see below:

Zacks ESP: Earnings ESP for Dean Foods is currently pegged at 0.00%. This is because the Most Accurate estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate are both pegged at 38 cents.

Zacks Rank: Dean Foods currently has a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). 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 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:

ULTA Salon, Cosmetics & Fragrance, Inc. ULTA, scheduled to release earnings on May 26, 2016, has an Earnings ESP of +0.78% and a Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy).

The TJX Companies, Inc. TJX, scheduled to release earnings on May 17, 2016, has an Earnings ESP of +1.43% and a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy).

L Brands, Inc. LB, slated to release earnings on May 18, 2016, has an Earnings ESP of +1.75% and a Zacks Rank #3 (Hold).

Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. http://www.zacks.com/registration/pfp/?ALERT=RPT_7BST_LP194&... blog">Click to get this free report >>


Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report
 
DEAN FOODS CO (DF): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
TJX COS INC NEW (TJX): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
ULTA SALON COSM (ULTA): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
L BRANDS INC (LB): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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