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Palo Alto Networks (PANW) Gains As Market Dips: What You Should Know

Zacks Equity Research
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In the latest trading session, Palo Alto Networks (PANW) closed at $243.10, marking a +0.83% move from the previous day. This change outpaced the S&P 500's 0.22% loss on the day. Meanwhile, the Dow lost 0.22%, and the Nasdaq, a tech-heavy index, lost 0.23%.

Heading into today, shares of the security software maker had lost 1.27% over the past month, lagging the Computer and Technology sector's gain of 6.02% and the S&P 500's gain of 4.87% in that time.

Wall Street will be looking for positivity from PANW as it approaches its next earnings report date. In that report, analysts expect PANW to post earnings of $1.25 per share. This would mark year-over-year growth of 26.26%. Meanwhile, the Zacks Consensus Estimate for revenue is projecting net sales of $703.44 million, up 24.04% from the year-ago period.

PANW's full-year Zacks Consensus Estimates are calling for earnings of $5.47 per share and revenue of $2.87 billion. These results would represent year-over-year changes of +37.09% and +26.07%, respectively.

It is also important to note the recent changes to analyst estimates for PANW. Recent revisions tend to reflect the latest near-term business trends. As a result, we can interpret positive estimate revisions as a good sign for the company's business outlook.

Our research shows that these estimate changes are directly correlated with near-term stock prices. To benefit from this, we have developed the Zacks Rank, a proprietary model which takes these estimate changes into account and provides an actionable rating system.

The Zacks Rank system, which ranges from #1 (Strong Buy) to #5 (Strong Sell), has an impressive outside-audited track record of outperformance, with #1 stocks generating an average annual return of +25% since 1988. Over the past month, the Zacks Consensus EPS estimate has moved 7.06% higher. PANW currently has a Zacks Rank of #2 (Buy).

Digging into valuation, PANW currently has a Forward P/E ratio of 44.06. Its industry sports an average Forward P/E of 45.58, so we one might conclude that PANW is trading at a discount comparatively.

It is also worth noting that PANW currently has a PEG ratio of 1.88. The PEG ratio is similar to the widely-used P/E ratio, but this metric also takes the company's expected earnings growth rate into account. The Security industry currently had an average PEG ratio of 2.81 as of yesterday's close.

The Security industry is part of the Computer and Technology sector. This group has a Zacks Industry Rank of 50, putting it in the top 20% of all 250+ industries.

The Zacks Industry Rank gauges the strength of our individual industry groups by measuring the average Zacks Rank of the individual stocks within the groups. Our research shows that the top 50% rated industries outperform the bottom half by a factor of 2 to 1.

Make sure to utilize Zacks. Com to follow all of these stock-moving metrics, and more, in the coming trading sessions.

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