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Ryder System (R) Q1 Earnings: What's in the Cards?

Ryder System R is scheduled to report first-quarter 2016 results on Apr 26, before market opens. Last quarter, the company posted a negative earnings surprise of 5.14%, hurt by soft sales. In fact, this was the sole earnings miss for the company in the last four quarters, the average beat being 1.20%.

Let’s see how things are shaping up prior to this announcement.

Factors at Play

Since the Fleet Management Solutions division accounts for the bulk of the revenues at Ryder System, the segment’s below-par performance will hamper the company’s first-quarter results significantly. Moreover, Ryder System faces headwinds such as unstable economic conditions, heavy capital expenditures, mounting debts, stiff competition and federal regulations. Furthermore, we expect results to be impacted by unfavorable foreign currency movements.

Meanwhile, we are concerned about the company’s weak balance sheet. Also, a significant portion of Ryder System’s business depends on the used vehicles market which does not seem promising at the moment, raising concern for the company.

We are, however, impressed by the company's efforts to reward shareholders through dividend payments. We expect the company to provide additional updates on its shareholder friendly activities on the first-quarter conference call.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Ryder System is likely to beat earnings 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. That is not the case here as you will see below.

Zacks ESP:  Ryder System has an earnings ESP of 0.00%.That is because the Most Accurate estimate is in line with the Zacks Consensus Estimate at $1.05 per share.

Zacks Rank: Ryder System has a Zacks Rank # 3 (Hold). However, this alone is not sufficient to secure an earnings beat.

As a caution, we advise investors against considering 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 some transportation companies you may want to consider as our model shows they have the right combination of elements to post an earnings beat in the upcoming quarter:

Canadian National Railway Company CNI, with an earnings ESP of +1.47% and a Zacks Rank #1. The company will report its first quarter 2016 results on Apr 25.

Copa Holdings CPA, with an earnings ESP of +8.70% and a Zacks Rank #3. The company is scheduled to report its first quarter results on May 5.

Allegiant Travel Company ALGT, with an earnings ESP of +0.47% and a Zacks Rank #3. The company is expected to release its first quarter earnings report on Apr 27.

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