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Jazz (JAZZ) Q1 Earnings: A Beat in the Cards for the Stock?

Jazz Pharmaceuticals plc JAZZ is scheduled to report first-quarter 2016 results on May 10, after the market closes. Last quarter, the company had comfortably surpassed expectations with a positive earnings surprise of 36.75%. Let’s see how things have shaped up for this quarter.

Factors Driving Q1 Results

At the time of announcing fourth-quarter 2015 earnings results, Jazz provided guidance for 2016. The company expects earnings in the range of $10.90 to $11.30 per share (representing year-over-growth of 14–19%) on revenues of $1.49–$1.55 billion (representing a year-over-year increase of 12–17%).

Jazz’s key product Xyrem should perform well in the first quarter of 2016 thereby contributing significantly to top-line growth. On the fourth-quarter call, the company had informed that Xyrem’s bottle growth was adversely affected by operational disruption at the central pharmacy. However, the disruption was resolved by the end of 2015 and the company expects high single-digit volume growth this year.

While sales of Erwinaze could be affected by supply constraints, performance of Prialt depends on the timing of shipments to Eisai Co., Ltd. ESALY, the European distributor of Prialt. Unfavorable currency movement is also expected to impact the performance of Defitelio and Erwinaze.

During the end of the quarter, the company witnessed a key event when the FDA approved Defitelio for the treatment of adult and pediatric patients suffering from hepatic hepatic veno-occlusive disease (also known as sinusoidal obstruction syndrome) with renal or pulmonary dysfunction following hematopoietic stem cell transplantation.

Operating expenses at the company could see a sequential increase due to investments in the launch of Defitelio in the U.S., investment in the late-stage development program of JZP-110 and the company’s lifecycle management and line extensions plans for its products.

On the first-quarter call, focus will be on the company’s performance along with that of its products. Commercialization plans for Defitelio, patent litigations related to Xyrem and the company’s business development plans will be the other key areas of focus.

Surprise History

Jazz’s track record has been far from impressive with the company beating earnings estimates in only one of the trailing four quarters. Overall, the company has delivered a positive earnings surprise of 3.09%.


Why a Likely Positive Surprise?

For the first quarter of 2016, our proven model shows that Jazz is likely to beat earnings estimates because it has the right combination of two key ingredients.

Positive Zacks ESP: Earnings ESP, which represents the difference between the Most Accurate estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate, is +6.11%. This is a meaningful and leading indicator of a likely positive earnings surprise for the shares.

Zacks Rank #3 (Hold): Note that stocks with Zacks Ranks of #1 (Strong Buy), #2 (Buy) and #3 have a significantly higher chance of beating earnings. However, 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.

The combination of Jazz’s Zacks Rank #3 and +6.11% ESP makes us reasonably confident of an earnings beat this season.

Other Stocks That Warrant a Look

Jazz is not the only company looking up this earnings season. Here are a couple of other health care stocks that you may want to consider as our model shows that they too have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat this quarter.

Celsion Corp. CLSN has an Earnings ESP of +4.35% and a Zacks Rank #3. It is expected to report first-quarter results on May 10.

The Earnings ESP for Impax Laboratories Inc. IPXL is +8.89% and it carries a Zacks Rank #3. The company is scheduled to release first-quarter results on May 10.

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CELSION CORP (CLSN): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
JAZZ PHARMACEUT (JAZZ): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
EISAI CO LTD (ESALY): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
IMPAX LABORATRS (IPXL): Free Stock Analysis Report
 
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