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ICON Public Limited Company Just Recorded A 8.3% EPS Beat: Here's What Analysts Are Forecasting Next

Simply Wall St
·4 min read

ICON Public Limited Company (NASDAQ:ICLR) just released its latest third-quarter results and things are looking bullish. Results were good overall, with revenues beating analyst predictions by 4.7% to hit US$702m. Statutory earnings per share (EPS) came in at US$1.72, some 8.3% above whatthe analysts had expected. This is an important time for investors, as they can track a company's performance in its report, look at what experts are forecasting for next year, and see if there has been any change to expectations for the business. Readers will be glad to know we've aggregated the latest statutory forecasts to see whether the analysts have changed their mind on ICON after the latest results.

View our latest analysis for ICON

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After the latest results, the 16 analysts covering ICON are now predicting revenues of US$3.13b in 2021. If met, this would reflect a solid 13% improvement in sales compared to the last 12 months. Statutory earnings per share are predicted to leap 31% to US$7.99. In the lead-up to this report, the analysts had been modelling revenues of US$3.05b and earnings per share (EPS) of US$7.84 in 2021. It looks like there's been a modest increase in sentiment following the latest results, withthe analysts becoming a bit more optimistic in their predictions for both revenues and earnings.

Despite these upgrades,the analysts have not made any major changes to their price target of US$203, suggesting that the higher estimates are not likely to have a long term impact on what the stock is worth. The consensus price target is just an average of individual analyst targets, so - it could be handy to see how wide the range of underlying estimates is. There are some variant perceptions on ICON, with the most bullish analyst valuing it at US$240 and the most bearish at US$125 per share. This shows there is still a bit of diversity in estimates, but analysts don't appear to be totally split on the stock as though it might be a success or failure situation.

These estimates are interesting, but it can be useful to paint some more broad strokes when seeing how forecasts compare, both to the ICON's past performance and to peers in the same industry. We can infer from the latest estimates that forecasts expect a continuation of ICON'shistorical trends, as next year's 13% revenue growth is roughly in line with 15% annual revenue growth over the past five years. Compare this with the wider industry, which analyst estimates (in aggregate) suggest will see revenues grow 9.1% next year. So it's pretty clear that ICON is forecast to grow substantially faster than its industry.

The Bottom Line

The most important thing here is that the analysts upgraded their earnings per share estimates, suggesting that there has been a clear increase in optimism towards ICON following these results. Pleasantly, they also upgraded their revenue estimates, and their forecasts suggest the business is expected to grow faster than the wider industry. The consensus price target held steady at US$203, with the latest estimates not enough to have an impact on their price targets.

Following on from that line of thought, we think that the long-term prospects of the business are much more relevant than next year's earnings. We have forecasts for ICON going out to 2024, and you can see them free on our platform here.

We also provide an overview of the ICON Board and CEO remuneration and length of tenure at the company, and whether insiders have been buying the stock, here.

This article by Simply Wall St is general in nature. It does not constitute a recommendation to buy or sell any stock, and does not take account of your objectives, or your financial situation. We aim to bring you long-term focused analysis driven by fundamental data. Note that our analysis may not factor in the latest price-sensitive company announcements or qualitative material. Simply Wall St has no position in any stocks mentioned.

Have feedback on this article? Concerned about the content? Get in touch with us directly. Alternatively, email editorial-team@simplywallst.com.