Late-inning earnings plays

4 major credit card and energy companies report results this week.

By Stock Traders Daily Oct 31, 2012 12:33PM

Stack of Credit Cards copyright Fuse, Getty ImagesBy Billy Fisher, Stock Traders Daily


This week we are in the late innings of the third-quarter earnings season with plenty of companies still left to report. A couple of major credit card companies will be releasing earnings, as will some major oil and gas companies. Here are four names for traders to keep an eye on.


After the market close on Wednesday, Visa (V) will announce its results. Analysts expect the payment-processing company to report an 18.1% rise in earnings per share (EPS) on a 12.2% gain in total revenue from a year ago.


This stock has been on a tear and is up 36.2% year-to-date. Traders can expect the success to continue post-release. Visa has come in with slight earnings beats in each of the last four quarters. A miss would slow the stock’s momentum, but don't count on it happening this week.


Technical indicators for Visa are very bullish. The 50-day moving average has been well above the 200-day moving average since the beginning of the year. Another upside surprise and the stock could go parabolic. Traders still need to protect themselves against downside risk by having reasonable stops in place. Stock Traders  Daily's Visa trading report can help them decide on acceptable levels of risk.


Visa rival Mastercard (MA) is also scheduled to report on Wednesday. The consensus on Wall Street is for a 5.3% improvement in EPS on a 6.7% rise in total revenue. Traders can bet on an earnings beat from Mastercard and it may be enough to stop the stock's recent decline.


Despite its fall from $486.08 to below $453, MA's 50-day moving average has also stayed above its 200-day moving average for all of 2012. Stock Traders Daily's trading report provides traders additional details on a technical level that this stock should not breach if it is to achieve a rally.


The independent energy powerhouse Hess Corp. (HES) has delayed its earnings release from Wednesday to Friday. Analysts are predicting that the company will post a 6.3% improvement in EPS on a 5.2% uptick in total revenue.


Hess should be viewed as a wildcard. Its technical indicators are impressive as its 50-day moving recently eclipsed its 200-day moving average, but traders should remain wary. The company has surprised to the downside in three of its last four quarters. If traders insist on taking a long position prior to the release, key levels contained in Stock Traders' Hess trading report can help in setting appropriate stop-loss orders.


Another oil and gas company to watch is Suncor Energy (SU), which reports after the close on Wednesday. Analysts expect Suncor to post EPS of $0.74 versus $1.13 a year ago. Total revenue is projected to decline by 7.4%. Last month, this stock experienced a technical breakthrough with the 50-day moving average cutting above the 200-day moving average. With the stock's current trajectory, traders can expect longer-term resistance levels to come into play. Traders can gain insight into these levels by reviewing Stock Traders' Suncor trading report.



Copyright © 2014 Microsoft. All rights reserved.

Fundamental company data and historical chart data provided by Morningstar Inc. Real-time index quotes and delayed quotes supplied by Morningstar Inc. Quotes delayed by up to 15 minutes, except where indicated otherwise. Fund summary, fund performance and dividend data provided by Morningstar Inc. Analyst recommendations provided by Zacks Investment Research. StockScouter data provided by Verus Analytics. IPO data provided by Hoover's Inc. Index membership data provided by Morningstar Inc.


StockScouter rates stocks from 1 to 10, with 10 being the best, using a system of advanced mathematics to determine a stock's expected risk and return. Ratings are displayed on a bell curve, meaning there will be fewer ratings of 1 and 10 and far more of 4 through 7.

123 rated 1
262 rated 2
480 rated 3
651 rated 4
649 rated 5
629 rated 6
616 rated 7
496 rated 8
346 rated 9
111 rated 10

Top Picks

TAT&T Inc9



Top Stocks provides analysis about the most noteworthy stocks in the market each day, combining some of the best content from around the MSN Money site and the rest of the Web.

Contributors include professional investors and journalists affiliated with MSN Money.

Follow us on Twitter @topstocksmsn.