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Aggressive Growth

Wesco (WCC - Analyst Report) delivered three consecutive positive earnings surprises that have shown earnings acceleration. Add in some higher estimates and you have all the components of a Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy).

Company Description

Wesco International, Inc. is a leading provider of electrical products and other industrial MRO supplies and services in North America. The company is also a provider of Integrated Supply services. Their Integrated Supply solutions and outsourcing services fulfill a customer's industrial MRO procurement needs through a highly automated, proprietary electronic procurement and inventory replenishment system. It operates 400 branches and 8 distribution centers located in North America and internationally. WESCO International, Inc. was founded in 1998 and is headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

WCC Tops Expectations Three Straight Times

WCC has beaten the Zacks Consensus Estimate in each of the last three quarters. One of the beats, in the September 2011 quarter saw the company post earnings of $1.13, $0.09 ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $1.04. The stock then moved higher by 10% after that 8.6% beat.

The string of beats started in the June 2011 quarter when the company posted EPS of one dollar, but that was seven cents ahead of the Zacks Consensus Estimate of $0.93. The stock moved higher by nearly 7% following the report.

WCC Recently Reported Earnings

On January 26, 2012 the company reported revenue of $1.59 billion roughly $63 million more than the Zacks Consensus Estimate and up from the $1.33 billion reported in the year ago period. EPS of $1.12 was $0.15 ahead of the estimate or a 15% beat. As a result the stock moved higher by about 6.5%.

Aggressive growth investors love to see beats, but they love it even more when the company increases the acceleration of earnings momentum with stronger beats on an absolute and percentage basis. WCC has done just that in its last three beats.

Earnings Estimates Bumped Up

Following the most recent earnings report, analysts bumped up their earnings estimates for 2012. The Zacks Consensus Estimate for 2012 EPS moved from $4.34 in December 2011 to the current level of $4.70.

Valuations

The recent beats have pushed the multiples for the stock higher than the industry averages, but are still quite palatable. Forward PE of 14x is in line with the broader market but higher than the industry average of 9x. The price to book of 2.1x is a discount to the industry average of 3x. A larger discount can be found in the price to sales metric, with WCC trading at .5x and the industry average at 1.3x.

The Chart

Looking at the price and consensus chart we see something that we don't normally have with such reasonable valuations. The analysts have been moving estimates higher over the last several years, but the stock has been trading well above the estimates. This is generally a sign of being over-priced, but the low multiples on this stock make me believe that analysts have just been slow to move estimates higher. As the stock continues to beat estimates and accelerate the earnings momentum, new highs are likely to be reached. WCC is a Zacks #1 Rank (Strong Buy).

Wesco International - ticker WCC>
 
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Brian Bolan is the Aggressive Growth Stock Strategist for Zacks.com. He is also the Editor in charge of the Zacks Home Run Investor service

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