Zacks Earnings Preview: Kroger, Staples, H&R Block, Hovnanian Enterprises and Transocean

Zacks Equity Research

For Immediate Release

Chicago, IL – March 4, 2013– Zacks.com releases the list of companies likely to issue earnings surprises. This week’s list includes Kroger (KR), Staples (SPLS), H&R Block (HRB), Hovnanian Enterprises (HOV) and Transocean (RIG).

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Looking Toward Employment Numbers

The budget sequester has taken effect, but thankfully everything seems to be just fine.

The fourth quarter earnings season is effectively in the books now, though it will still be couple of more weeks before we can officially call an end to the reporting season. The focus this week will be on economic data, with the February jobs reports coming out on Friday. The budget sequester will also provide headlines, though thankfully the actual onset of the long-dreaded event has thus far been quite underwhelming.

But while earnings may not be in the headlines, we will have a total of 188 companies coming out with results this week, including 5 S&P 500 members. By the end of this week, we will be close to the finish line, having seen Q4 results from 491 S&P 500 companies or 98.2% of the index’s total membership. The major companies reporting this week include Kroger (KR), Staples (SPLS), H&R Block (HRB), Hovnanian Enterprises (HOV) and Transocean (RIG).

The reality of the Q4 earnings season is that it has turned out to be not as bad as many of us suspected. Leaving aside anemic growth, on most other metrics the fourth quarter reporting season is quite good. Not only are the ratio and magnitude of surprises better than the previous quarter and comparable to the last many, but the tone of management guidance has also been less worrisome than was the case in the third quarter reporting season.

Total earnings for the 486 S&P 500 companies that have come out with Q4 results, as of Friday March 1, are up +2% from the same period last year, with 64% beating expectations with a strong median surprise of +3.4%.

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Read the analyst report on KR

Read the analyst report on SPLS

Read the analyst report on HRB

Read the analyst report on HOV

Read the analyst report on RIG

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