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Duke Energy (DUK) Q4 Earnings: Disappointment in Store?

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Duke Energy Corporation DUK is set to report fourth-quarter 2017 results on Feb 20, before the opening bell.

Last quarter, the company posted a positive earnings surprise of 1.92%. However, the company missed the Zacks Consensus Estimate in two of the past four quarters, the average earnings miss being 0.24%.

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

Factors at Play

Hurricane Irma led to wide-spread catastrophic losses in Florida during the third quarter of 2017. In relation to this, Duke Energy filed an application with the Florida Public Service Commission (“FPSC”) in December 2017, to recoup the expenses incurred to restore normalcy of utility services in the state post the hurricane

Per this filing, the company has requested for a restoration cost recovery of $381 million and an additional $132 million to replenish its storm reserve account. However, the company believes that due to the latest federal tax reform, its customers’ electricity bill will no longer increase on FPSC approving it.

Owing to these factors, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for Duke Energy’s earnings of 91 cents reflects an improvement of 12.4% year over year, while sales are anticipated to rise 4% to $5.85 billion.

However, adverse outcome from pending regulatory cases may negatively impact results. Notably, the company incurred expenses in relation to coal ash release which in turn may weigh on its financials.

Earnings Whispers

Our proven model does not conclusively show that Duke Energy will beat estimates 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. But that is not the case here, as you will see below.

Zacks ESP: Duke Energy has an Earnings ESP of -0.09%. You can uncover the best stocks to buy or sell before they’re reported with our Earnings ESP Filter.

Zacks Rank: Duke Energy carries a Zacks Rank #4 (Sell). Please note that we caution against stocks with a Zacks Rank #4 or 5 (Strong Sell) while going into an earnings announcement.

Duke Energy Corporation Price and EPS Surprise

Duke Energy Corporation Price and EPS Surprise | Duke Energy Corporation Quote

Stocks That Warrant a Look

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

NiSource, Inc. NI has an Earnings ESP of +1.45% and a Zacks Rank #3. It is slated to report quarterly results on Feb 20. You can see the complete list of today’s Zacks #1 Rank stocks here.

CenterPoint Energy, Inc. CNP has an Earnings ESP of +2.65% and a Zacks Rank #2. It is scheduled to report quarterly results on Feb 22.

Public Service Enterprise Group PEG has an Earnings ESP of +0.72% and a Zacks Rank #2. It is slated to release quarterly results on Feb 23.

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CenterPoint Energy, Inc. (CNP) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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Duke Energy Corporation (DUK) : Free Stock Analysis Report
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