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Pentair (PNR) Q1 Earnings: What's in Store for the Stock?

Pentair plc PNR – a diversified industrial manufacturing company that provides products, services and solutions for water and other fluids, thermal management and equipment protection – is slated to report first-quarter 2016 results on Apr 26, before the opening bell.

Factors Influencing This Quarter

Pentair’s first-quarter 2016 earnings guidance is in the range of 70 cents to 72 cents, reflecting a year-over-year decline of 7% on an adjusted basis. Revenues are projected to be around $1.6 billion, up 7–8% on a reported basis and approximately 1% on a core basis.

Pentair expects its businesses serving the energy and industrial markets to continue facing challenges in the quarter. Moreover, in the Valve & Control segment, core orders declined 15% in the fourth quarter of 2015, consistent with the double-digit decline the business experienced throughout the year. Moreover, backlog was down 4%. The company does not expect orders to improve in the first quarter of 2016 due to the global economic uncertainty and customers’ re-evaluation of planned projects.

On the bright side, Pentair’s acquisition of electrical and fastening products maker, ERICO Global Company, has strengthened its business by broadening the product offering and is expected to provide earnings accretion this year. The company continues to aggressively manage its cost structure and drive productivity. It is also investing in the high-performance Technical Solutions and Water Quality Systems segments, where it sees opportunities  for strategic organic and inorganic growth.

Growth in Pentair’s second-largest vertical, residential/commercial, remains healthy driven by continued strength in the North American residential replacement market and the ongoing recovery in commercial construction. The Food & Beverage segment, which accounts for 10% of Pentair’s sales, is projected to be driven mainly by strength in the beverage and food services markets, further share gains and customer penetration.

Surprise History

Pentair outpaced the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the last four quarters and met the same in one. The average positive surprise was 3.22%. Let’s see how things are shaping up for this announcement.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Pentair will beat estimates this quarter as it does not have the key components. Actually, 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, which is not the case here as you will see below.

Zacks ESP: Pentair’s Earnings ESP stands at -2.78%. This is because the Most Accurate estimate of 70 cents is lower than the Zacks Consensus Estimate of 72 cents.

Zacks Rank: Although Pentair’s Zacks Rank #3 increases the predictive power of ESP, its negative ESP makes surprise prediction difficult.

Note that we caution against stocks with a Zacks Rank #4 and 5 (Sell-rated stocks) going into the earnings announcement, especially when the company is seeing negative estimate revisions.

Stocks That Warrant a Look

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

Regal Beloit Corporation RBC has an Earnings ESP of +0.92% and a Zacks Rank #2.

Nordson Corporation NDSN has an Earnings ESP of +1.09% and a Zacks Rank #2.

Parker-Hannifin Corporation PH has an Earnings ESP of +0.69% and a Zacks Rank #2.

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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
PARKER HANNIFIN (PH): Free Stock Analysis Report
REGAL BELOIT (RBC): Free Stock Analysis Report
NORDSON CORP (NDSN): Free Stock Analysis Report
PENTAIR PLC (PNR): Free Stock Analysis Report
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