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CME Group (CME) Q4 Earnings: What's in Store for the Stock?

Zacks Equity Research

CME Group Inc. CME is set to report fourth-quarter 2018 earnings on Feb 14, before the market opens. In the last reported quarter, the company delivered a positive surprise of 2.11%.

Let’s see, what is in store for the company this yet-to-be reported quarter.

The company is likely to have reported an increase in clearing and transaction fees besides improved access and communication fees. This in turn, has possibly led to top-line growth. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for clearing and transaction fees is pegged at $971 million, up 28.1% year over year. With respect to access and communication fees, the metric stands at $26.43 million, up 2% on a year-over-year basis.

Leading market share of the global futures trading and clearing services, prudent investment and focused activities from sales and marketing, expansion of futures products in the emerging markets, non-transaction related opportunities and OTC offerings might have aided the top-line increase for CME Group in the fourth quarter. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenues stands at $1.2 billion, up 29% year over year.

Moreover, the company has probably experienced higher trading volumes across interest rate, equities and metal product lines. Growth across such product lines along with product diversification is expected to have driven this upside. This in turn, might have lent a boost to the bottom line in the fourth quarter with the consensus mark being pegged at $1.75 per share, up 56.3% from the year-ago quarter.

Additionally, lower tax incidence is likely to contribute to the bottom line in the yet-to-be-reported quarter.

Shutdown of the London-based derivatives exchange and clearing house, CME Europe and CME Clearing Europe, will lead to annual savings between $10 million and $12 million that will impact results for the full year.

Despite a prudent expense discipline in place, the company might have witnessed higher expenses in the soon-to-be-reported quarter. The company estimates spending pattern to remain the same with the fourth quarter spending projected to be below 3%.

What Our Quantitative Model Predicts

Our proven model does not conclusively show that CME Group is likely to beat on earnings this reporting season. This is because a stock needs to have both a positive Earnings ESP and a favorable Zacks Rank #1 (Strong Buy), 2 (Buy) or 3 (Hold) for this to happen. But that is not the case here as you will see below.

Earnings ESP: CME Group has an Earnings ESP of 0.00%. This is because both the Most Accurate Estimate and the Zacks Consensus Estimate stand at $1.75. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they are reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

CME Group Inc. Price and EPS Surprise

 

CME Group Inc. Price and EPS Surprise | CME Group Inc. Quote

Zacks Rank: CME Group carries a Zacks Rank #3, which increases the predictive power of ESP. However, the company’s ESP of 0.00% makes surprise prediction difficult.

We caution against the Sell-rated stocks (#4 or 5) going into an earnings announcement, especially when the company is seeing negative estimate revisions.

Stocks to Consider

Some stocks worth considering from the finance sector with the perfect mix of elements to outshine estimates this time around are as follows:

AerCap Holdings N.V. AER is set to report fourth-quarter earnings on Feb 14. The company has an Earnings ESP of +1.44% and a Zacks Rank #2. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

Agree Realty Corporation ADC has an Earnings ESP of +0.88% and a Zacks Rank of 3. The company is slated to announce fourth-quarter earnings on Feb 21.

American Tower Corporation (REIT) AMT has an Earnings ESP of +0.29% and is a Zacks #3 Ranked player. The company is scheduled to release fourth-quarter earnings on Feb 27.

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